FINANCE

Subway to open 2,000 North American locations in 2011

BY CSA STAFF

Milford, Conn. –Subway Restaurants said Friday that more than 2,000 franchisees are actively searching for locations slated for 2011 openings.

In order to reach its development goals, the chain said that a contingent of Subway representatives will be manning the brand’s booth at the International Council of Shopping Centers’ RECon convention, May 23 to 25, in Las Vegas.

"We will be aggressively looking for sites and ready to make deals,” said Chris Kan, Training and Business Promotion Specialist for Subway Real Estate, LLC.

Subway said it continues forge ahead with new opportunities in traditional shopping centers, mall and freestanding locations as well as non-traditional venues such as hospitals, colleges, sports arenas and airports. Since this past January, the chain has opened nearly 700 new stores in 50 countries, 43 U.S. states and 8 Canadian provinces, which equates to approximately 840,000 sq. ft. of commercial retail space.

The chain is testing a new Subway café format, specifically designed to satisfy the needs of landlords of office buildings and upscale properties. The concept is a combination sandwich shop and coffee bar, featuring feature brick or wood-paneled walls, soft seating, and an expanded menu that includes baked goods and frozen coffee drinks.

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FINANCE

Syms urged by shareholder to stem retail losses, sell real estate

BY CSA STAFF

New York City –Discount retailer Syms Corp. was urged by a shareholder to stem losses in its clothing business and sell some of the real estate holdings accumulated by late founder Sy Syms.

According to a Friday report by Bloomberg, Capstone Equities Capital Management LP sent a letter to Syms directors and CEO Marcy Syms on Thursday advocating asset sales, share buybacks and other steps to “enhance shareholder value.”

Capstone values Syms’s real estate at more than $200 million, or about 50% more than the company’s worth as a money-losing retailer, according to the report.

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FINANCE

Hibbett Sports Q1 earnings surge 23%, to open 40 net new stores

BY CSA STAFF

Birmingham, Ala. — Hibbett Sports Inc. reported Friday that net income for the quarter ended April 30 rose 23% to $21.3 million, compared with $17.3 million in the year-ago period.

Revenue increased 10.4% to $203.7 million, beating analysts’ projected $200.8 million in revenue.

During the quarter, Hibbett opened eight new stores, expanded four others and closed seven underperforming stores. During the rest of the fiscal year, Hibbett said it expects to open between 50 and 55 new stores, close 10 to 15 stores and expand another 15 stores.

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