Retailers reach out to help Haiti
New York City The nation’s retailers, fashion brands and restaurant chains are reaching out in response to the devastating 7.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Haiti on Tuesday. The Walmart Foundation will give $500,000 in cash, and food kits worth $100,000 to help victims.
The Walmart Foundation said its donations will be given through the American Red Cross. The foundation also launched a Web site at walmartstores.com/haiti, where customers and employees can donate to nonprofits that are helping Haitian victims of the natural disaster.
Target Corp. said that it is donating $500,000 and more than a million meals to help those affected by Tuesday’s earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The retailer said it will make the monetary donation through the American Red Cross. Volunteers are working with students from Minneapolis-based The Fair School and nonprofit ImpactLives to make meals to send to Haiti, the company said.
Walgreen Co. on Friday announced it will donate up to $150,000 for earthquake relief in Haiti, and will also donate food, water, and medical supplies.
The drugstore chain said it will donate $100,000 to the American Red Cross, and will match donations by employees dollar-for-dollar up to $50,000. Walgreen also said it is giving nonperishable food, water, and medical supplies to be used in clinics and triage units in the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince.
The supplies are being given to the University of Miami Global Institute for Community Health and Development.
McDonald’s Corp. announced a donation of $500,000 to be matched with donations from Arcos Dorados, the company that operates nearly 1,700 McDonald’s restaurants in Latin America. These combined contributions are estimated to total at least $1 million.
Vans shoes is donating 30 containers carrying 10,000 pairs of work boots, rain boots and children’s shoes to earthquake survivors.
Earlier this month, Timberland released a line of boots designed by Wyclef Jean to benefit his Yele Haiti organization. Originally, $2 from the sale of each pair of boots was going toward reforestation in Haiti, but efforts have been redirected since Tuesday to help earthquake victims.
Other retailers making contributions toward Haitian earthquake relief include:
- The Safeway Foundation will make an initial contribution of $100,000 to the American Red Cross and UNICEF, two organizations at the forefront of the earthquake disaster relief mission. The company’s stores throughout the United States and Canada will immediately begin collecting donations for Haiti Disaster Relief through a checkstand program.
In addition, Safeway’s corporate offices and other non-store facilities will conduct employee fundraisers so the company’s entire workforce can contribute to this important effort.
- Yum Brands, owner of KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, report the company is directing $500,000 to Haiti from its World Hunger Relief program launched in 2007. Yum Brands Foundation also will match Yum employee donations up to $500,000. Funds raised will go to the United Nations World Food Programme and other relief programs.
- The Limited Brands Foundation is making a $100,000 cash donation to the American Red Cross Haiti Relief and Development Fund to support relief efforts in Haiti. Limited Brands Foundation is the charitable arm of Limited Brands.
- Kohl’s is making a $250,000 donation to the American Red Cross.
- Dollar General Corp. is giving $100,000 to the International Red Cross.
- The charity Soles4Souls said Friday that it will send 250,000 pairs of shoes to help victims of the Haiti earthquake.
Soles4Souls, based in Nashville, Tenn., also plans to send food, medical supplies, water, blankets and baby products.
Soles4Souls collects shoes from footwear companies and individuals and distributes them to those in need around the world.
Zale shakes up management
DALLAS Zale announced that Neal Goldberg, CEO and member of the board of directors, William Acevedo, chief stores officer, and Mary Kwan, chief merchandising officer, have left the company effective immediately. The board of directors has appointed Theo Killion, president, to the additional role of interim CEO.
Killion joined Zale in January 2008 as EVP and was appointed president in August 2008. Previously, Killion held senior management positions at Tommy Hilfiger, Limited Brands, Macy’s East and the Home Shopping Network. HE will assume initial responsibility for all store operations.
In addition, Zale also announced that Gil Hollander, EVP and chief sourcing and supply chain officer, has assumed the additional role of chief merchandising officer. This change will bring all aspects of diamond sourcing and merchandising under Hollander’s oversight. He has over 35 years of experience in the jewelry industry, joined Zale in September 2000 with the acquisition of Piercing Pagoda and has served in various senior management positions with the company.
“Our board is determined to do all in its power to put in place effective leadership to help return the company to profitability. At the same time, these management changes will help facilitate renewed focus on Zale’s core diamond business. We are fortunate to have executives with Theo Killion’s and Gil Hollander’s experience to assume greater leadership responsibilities as we refocus on our core strengths,” said John Lowe, Jr., chairman of Zale.
Home Depot steps up software
New York City
In a deal announced at the National Retail Federation trade show here, Home Depot will transition to Fujitsu U-Scan self-checkout software, making it easier for the retailer to make upgrades to its point-of-sale system.
The new software is described by Fujitsu as an “open integration architecture utilizing a unique virtual point-of-sale like messaging framework.”
Home Depot’s Cara Kinzey, senior VP IT store, field and corporate support, explained in a prepared statement that the focus of the company’s IT efforts is to improve the shopping experience. “Fujitsu U-Scan self-checkout software will help us accelerate delivery of business-critical POS software changes to our stores,” she said. “Taking advantage of the U-Scan self-checkout software architecture’s flexibility means that we can better respond to changing business conditions, making us more efficient, competitive and responsive to customer needs.”