MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: Personal data requires user-centric approach

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – A user-centric approach is the best way to enhance trust, transparency and privacy in personal data usage. In conjunction with A.T. Kearney, the World Economic Forum has released three reports as part of its Rethinking Personal Data initiative.

The first report, “Rethinking Personal Data: A New Lens for Strengthening Trust,” advises that individuals must have more of a say in how their data is used and should be able to use the data for their own purposes. “Rethinking Personal Data: Trust and Context in User-Centred Data Ecosystems,” an empirical study across different countries, examines the importance of context-aware data usage and how it impacts trust.

And “The Internet Trust Bubble: Global Values, Beliefs and Practices” uses the results from a survey of 16,000 respondents to assess the attitudes and behavior of Internet users globally. It shows that individuals are on the whole positive about the opportunities offered by the Internet, particularly related to freedom of expression. However, the report highlights concerns over privacy, surveillance and security.

“In order to build a truly sustainable personal data economy, regaining the trust of individuals over the use of their data is imperative,” said Naveen Menon, partner and APAC head of communications, media, and technology at A.T. Kearney. “This means finding new ways to connect and provide them with choices that enable them to return to a sense of control over data usage.”

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OPERATIONS

Havertys promotes four execs to VP roles

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta – Havertys has promoted four executives to VP positions. Richard Gallagher was promoted to executive VP merchandising; Bonnie Berry was promoted to VP HR; Greg Johnson was promoted to VP distribution; and Jim Presmanes was promoted to VP risk management and insurance.

Gallagher began his career with Havertys as a salesperson in 1988 and was promoted to senior VP merchandising in 2009 and in 2013, assumed oversight responsibilities for both marketing and supply chain functions. Berry has been with Havertys for more than 30 years was named assistant VP HR in 1997. Johnson began his career with Havertys in 1986 and was promoted to assistant VP distribution in 2012. Presmanes joined the company in 1992 and was named assistant VP in 2000.

"We are pleased to promote these experienced professionals in these diverse and critical functions of our business," said Clarence H. Johnson, chairman, president and CEO of Havertys.

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FINANCE

Kate Spade returns to profit in Q1

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – Kate Spade & Company earned net income of $46 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2014. This marked a return to profitability after a net loss of $52 million in the prior year period.

The inclusion of net income from discontinued operations of $101 million helped Kate Spade reverse its net loss. Net sales were $328 million, an increase of 33.5% from $246 million in first quarter 2013, reflecting an increase in sales in the Kate Spade and Juicy Couture segments, partially offset by a decline in sales in the Adelington Design Group segment.

“While the promotional environment was much more competitive than last year, we stayed on strategy to build our full-price business in our specialty stores with a focus on client experience and rigorous planning that increased conversions,” said Craig A. Leavitt, president and CEO of Kate Spade. “Our small leather goods and handbag categories led this robust growth. Moreover, we are reaffirming our 2014 Adjusted EBITDA guidance of $115 million-125 million."

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