REAL ESTATE

Sold: Willow Pass shopping center in Concord, Calif.

BY Michael Fickes

Walnut Creek, Calif. — John Cumbelich & Associates, a San Francisco Bay Area-based commercial real estate firm, has announced the sale of 1280 Willow Pass, a 73,167-sq.-ft. shopping center in Concord, Calif.

X Team International partner, John Cumbelich & Associates, represented both the buyer and the seller in the transaction, which attracted multiple offers.

Cumbelich also represented the seller in securing a 57,000-sq.-ft. lease with Hobby Lobby, which brought the property to 100% occupancy, prior to marketing the shopping center. The new Hobby Lobby will be one of the chain’s first Northern California stores.

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Bumble Bee taps celebrity chef as new brand ambassador

BY CSA STAFF

Bumble Bee Foods has selected celebrity chef Doreen Colondres as the brand’s exclusive chef partner and brand ambassador. Colondres is a leading figure in today’s “Latin kitchen” movement and creator of the brand and website the Kitchen Doesn’t Bite.

Colondres is joining Bumble Bee in its mission “to inspire consumers to embrace a healthy and delicious lifestyle.” Colondres first teamed up with Bumble Bee last year to connect the brand with the growing U.S. Hispanic market and promote Bumble Bee’s “BeeWell for Life” brand philosophy.

“We’re thrilled to work with Doreen again and share her passion for inspiring people to cook and have fun doing it,” said Dave Melbourne, Bumble Bee SVP, consumer marketing and corporate social responsibility. “Her extensive knowledge of Hispanic cooking and food expertise brings fresh creativity and international flair to the brand, helping relate to consumers everywhere.”

Doreen, who also appears on TV cooking segments on FoxLife, will be creating new recipes for Bumble Bee, sharing cooking tips and teaching consumers “how to use fresh, seasonal ingredients to create healthy, convenient meal solutions.” She is also working on the launch of her first book, La Cocina No Muerde, to be released this fall.

“Bumble Bee has always been a favorite of mine because it celebrates good food and promotes an overall healthy lifestyle,” said Colondres. “I love introducing people to exceptional quality ingredients like those found in Bumble Bee products that allow them to get out of their normal routine in the kitchen and enjoy cooking simple, healthy yet savory recipes.”

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REAL ESTATE

RadioShack opens concept stores in China, Malaysia

BY Dan Berthiaume

Fort Worth, Texas – RadioShack has opened two new concept stores in China and Malaysia, marking the brand’s most recent moves throughout Asia and Southeast Asia.

Working with joint venture partner FIH (First Honest Enterprises Limited), RadioShack introduced its first concept store in China on March 21 with a grand opening ceremony at Huacao Town, Shanghai. RadioShack and franchise partner Berjaya Retail Berhad also relaunched a completely renovated existing store at Mid Valley Megamall in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on March 26.

RadioShack plans to open at least 15 future locations over the next year in key markets throughout Asia. RadioShack has an existing long-term master franchise agreement with Berjaya RadioShack Sdn Bhd., a subsidiary of Malaysian retailing conglomerate Berjaya Retail Berhad, which calls for Berjaya to expand the electronics chain across 10 countries in Southeast Asia in the next 10 years.

These two new stores represent the second and third international concept stores for the brand, following the November 2013 debut of its international concept store in Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. In the time since RadioShack introduced its first concept store in New York City in June 2013, the brand has opened 30 concept stores in the U.S.

Features of RadioShack’s new concept stores in China and Malaysia include interactive displays that enable shoppers to find and compare products, including demo stations where they can explore products among leading brands before buying, as well as a speaker wall where customers can browse and compare different speakers by listening to music installed on in-store tablets.

"International expansion remains a growth opportunity for RadioShack, and we are excited to continue to introduce our reinvigorated, interactive store experience to consumers in Malaysia and China," said Joe Magnacca, CEO of RadioShack. "Our expansion will take us into both emerging and established tech markets abroad, and we believe this new store environment, combined with our knowledgeable, collaborative store associates, will allow RadioShack to become a destination for the expanding technology needs in these international markets."

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