Safeway Honored for Energy Efforts
Safeway has been recognized as a leader in responsible energy use by California’s energy-efficiency campaign, Flex Your Power. The Pleasanton, Calif.-based supermarket chain has achieved dramatic energy savings through several programs, including its “Power to Save” initiative, which saves 18.6 million kilowatt-hours (kwh) annually. Other savings stem from lighting retrofits, energy-management controls and refrigeration updates. In all, Safeway is saving more than 98 million kwh of electricity annually, significantly reducing its power bills and cutting carbon-dioxide emissions by almost 100 million lbs.
In addition, Safeway is currently developing approximately 24 solar projects across the state of California. The chain expects to have eight to 12 solar projects completed by yearend.
Safeway is the first and only retailer to join both the Chicago Climate Exchange—North America’s only voluntary, legally binding greenhouse-gas emissions-reduction registry and trading program—and the California Climate Action Registry, the state’s official registry for greenhouse-gas reduction projects.
Fresh & Easy Sets Ambitious Recycling Agenda
Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market, Tesco’s U.S. retail division, is partnering with Resource Management Group (RMG), San Diego, to design a state-of-the-art recycling and waste-reduction program that will significantly reduce the amount of waste leaving its stores and distribution center (DC).
The program is set up to create accountability and flexibility in regard to reducing and recycling waste. As part of the effort, Fresh & Easy will recycle or reuse all of its display and shipping materials.
In addition, all display-ready packaging—one of each store’s largest waste streams—will be sent back to the DC, where it will be sorted and either recycled or cleaned and reused, thereby diverting a substantial amount of waste from the landfill.
The waste program is one of many environmental initiatives launched by Fresh & Easy, set to open in November with locations in Southern California, Nevada and Arizona. The retailer has joined LEED’s (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) volume-certification pilot program, which streamlines the certification process for companies building multiple but similar facilities.
Fresh & Easy estimates its buildings will reduce energy output by approximately 30% compared to a typical grocery store. Specific green features include:
Night shades on refrigeration cases to keep cool air from escaping;
Secondary-loop system on refrigeration cases designed to capture and reuse cool air;
LED lighting in external signage and freezer cases;
Increased insulation, reducing need for HVAC; and
Skylights on new buildings with overhead lighting that dims automatically.
BJ’s in Solar-Power Partnership
Solar photovoltaic (PV) systems have been installed on the rooftops of two BJ’s Wholesale Club locations in Connecticut, in the towns of Derby and Willimantic. The systems are expected to generate a total of approximately 180,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, and also result in a combined reduction in CO2 emissions to approximately 86 tons per year.
The two solar arrays are the largest solar PV installations at retail sites in the state. The installations were made possible, in part, by a grant from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. The system developer and owner, Conservation Services Group (CSG), Westborough, Mass, is financing the balance of the system cost.
During the past eight years, CSG and BJ’s have partnered on 14 PV installations throughout the Northeast. CSG manages the operation of the systems and sells the clean power back to BJ’s.
ASHRAE Seeks to Increase Efficiency
ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers) is committed to increasing building energy efficiency in Standard 90.1. The organization is looking to achieve 30% energy savings in the 2010 standard compared to ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2004.
Any changes to Standard 90.1 will follow ASHRAE’s standards development process, which is approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and based on achieving consensus.
Winn-Dixie team honored for turnaround
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. The team that lead Winn-Dixie Stores’ successful turnaround initiative is being honored by the Turnaround Management Association for the best ‘Mega Company Turnaround’ for 2007. Comprised of financial experts from The Blackstone Group, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Smith Hulsey & Busey, the team helped Winn-Dixie regain the market share and profits it started to lose in the mid 1990s and early 2000s to competitors Publix and Wal-Mart.
Winn-Dixie filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early 2005 after reporting year-to-date losses of $552.8 million or $3.93 per share of common stock and a decline of 4.9% in identical-store sales in its second fiscal quarter over the same period in 2004.
Despite the difficulty of achieving a succesful turnaround, Winn-Dixie began its reorganization effort, while still continuing to operate its core business and preserving jobs. According to the Turnaround Management Association, it created new common stock for five classes of unsecured creditors, with recoveries ranging from about 96% to 53%. The company emerged from bankruptcy on Nov. 21, 2006.
For its fiscal year ended June 27, Winn-Dixie reported adjusted EBITDA of $85.9 million compared to a loss of $27.8 million last year and an identical-store sales increase of 1.6%
Sears ends deal with maternity retailer
PHILADELPHIA Sears and Mothers Work, the world’s leading maternity apparel retailer, will not be renewing their agreement, Mothers Work announced today. Under their current agreement, Mothers Works operates the maternity apparel department in 502 Sears stores through the sale of its Two Hearts Maternity branded merchandise.
Mothers Work said it expects its partnership with Sears to end on June 20, 2008, when it current deal with the company is expected to expire.
Rebecca Matthias, president and ceo of Mothers Work, noted, “While we are disappointed about the end of our relationship with Sears, we feel the decision not to proceed with a renewal is in the best interest of our stockholders since we were unable to reach terms on a renewal which would be favorable for Mothers Work and our stockholders. “