Sonic taps Planalytics for weather insights
Berwyn, Pa. — Planalytics announced that Sonic Corp. has subscribed to its Business Weather Intelligence Platform. Sonic is utilizing Planalytics’ Consumer InsightsSM service to analyze, quantify and manage the weather’s impact on restaurant traffic and demand for certain products such as fountain drinks, frozen treats and entrees.
"Planalytics will help us better understand the impact of weather in each of our key markets," stated Barbra Castleberry, manager of marketing analysis for Sonic, which has more than 3,500 locations nationwide.
Gordon Brothers and WME in partnership to acquire brands
Boston — Gordon Brothers Group, a global investment, lending and advisory firm, and WME, a leading talent agency, jointly announced the formation of a strategic partnership to identify, acquire and often revitalize undervalued, distressed or orphaned consumer product and retail brands.
Currently, Gordon Brothers Group and WME are evaluating a host of potential brands to acquire. Some of Gordon Brothers Group’s current brand investments include Linens ‘N Things and The Sharper Image.
Gap North America president departs
San Francisco — Gap announced Tuesday that Marka Hansen president of Gap North America, has resigned, effective Feb. 4.
According to Glenn Murphy, Gap chairman and CEO, the decision to change leadership was mutual.
“After several conversations, Marka and I agreed this was the right time for a change in the organization in order to take Gap brand to a new level,” he said.
The apparel retailer said it has identified an internal successor to Hansen, who will be announced in the next day.
Hansen started as a Banana Republic merchant in 1987, then grew to hold top merchandising roles at both Banana Republic and Gap, as well as in the International division when the company prepared to open in Europe and Japan. She also served as president of Banana Republic starting in 2003, before assuming the role of president of Gap North America in 2007.
Gap brand, which accounts for approximately 40% of the company’s total sales, has struggled for much of the past decade. Same-store sales at Gap brand North America have fallen each year from 2004 to 2009 and are expected to post another decrease for 2010.
Hansen’s resignation follows a particularly difficult holiday season at Gap brand North America. Although November same-store sales rose 5%, December was a struggle as same-store sales fell 8% and traffic counts slipped.