REAL ESTATE

Wal-Mart to Double Stores in China

BY CSA STAFF

Bentonville, Ark., Wal-Mart Stores plans to more than double its stores in China in the next five years to tap into the growing personal wealth of the country’s 1.3 billion people, according to a report by Bloomberg.

The expansion will help the company broaden its reach beyond its current 84 stores across 46 Chinese cities into smaller cities, where competition is less fierce, the report said. Wal-Mart expects the growth to help it garner 20% of China’s retail market.

Wal-Mart has opened 12 stores in mainland China so far this year, on track to beat 2006 openings of 15, the company said. The retailer sped up its expansion earlier this year by acquiring a 35% stake in China’s Trust-Mart. Wal-Mart said at the time that the move may lead to its taking ownership control of Trust-Mart’s more than 100 hypermarkets.

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Bright future forecasted for HD-DVD

BY CSA STAFF

LAS VEGAS Studio executives and analysts expect a bright future for high-definition DVD despite a slow start in 2006 caused in part by a format war.

At the Home Media Expo opening business session in Las Vegas Tuesday, Warner Home Video worldwide senior vp Steve Nickerson said consumers are already preparing for the transition from standard to high-definition DVD. “It’s estimated that 36% of all U.S. households will have a high definition TV by year’s end,” said Nickerson.

A report from Adams Media Research said the Blu-Ray and HD-DVD high-definition formats launched last spring accounted for just 0.5% of total DVD sales in 2006 but that percentage is on the rise. Kagan Research estimates high-definition DVD will account for 14% of sales by 2009 and 53.7% ($14.98 billion) by 2012.

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GSI opens largest fulfillment center

BY CSA STAFF

RICHWOOD, Ky. GSI Commerce Inc. announced that it recently opened a new, highly automated fulfillment center in Richwood, Ky. At 540,000 square feet, the state-of-the-art center is GSI’s largest facility to date. At full capacity, Richwood will ship more than 110,000 orders per day during peak season while creating more than 500 full-time and 500 seasonal jobs.

“Our advanced Richwood facility was designed to support the immediate and future needs of GSI’s growing, diverse partner base,” said Bob Wuesthoff, GSI’s evp of global operations. “Fulfillment is a key component to GSI’s end-to-end solution, and Richwood complements our existing infrastructure while simultaneously providing additional scalability to our operations. The employees at our Shepherdsville and Louisville, Ky., facilities are critical to the success of our global operations and we’re delighted to welcome the community of Richwood and our newest employees to GSI.”

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