Wal-Mart’s U.S. chief administrative officer to step down
New York — Wal-Mart Stores on Thursday confirmed a report from the Wall Street Journal that its U.S. chief administrative officer, Tom Mars, will step down in March. The company did not give a reason for his departure.
Mars has been with the chain for more than a decade. He served as the chain’s general counsel from 2002 to 2009, and was involved in an investigation into bribery allegations regarding a Wal-Mart store built near the Mexican pyramids, according to company emails released in January by members of Congress, Reuters reported.
ShopKeep POS earns customer service award
NEW YORK — ShopKeep POS was presented with a Bronze Stevie Award for Front-Line Customer Service Team of the Year in the Computer Hardware, Services & Software category at the seventh annual Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Other finalists in this category included Rackspace Hosting and nFocus Solutions.
ShopKeep POS was founded in 2008 by Jason Richelson, a former multi-store retailer in NYC, whose keen eye for merchant pain points and needs has influenced how he has built every inch of the company.
"We have the best customer care in the business because we care about our customers and listen to what they are saying," says Jason Richelson, CEO and founder of ShopKeep POS. "It sounds simple but most companies can’t get it right. When you listen to your customers you learn a lot from them. You figure out very quickly what you are doing right and what needs to change."
The company’s merchant onboarding and training process is incredibly simple, allowing businesses to get started in minutes. Once that happens, product updates and feature enhancements are primarily driven by merchant requests and merchants are empowered to provide feedback publicly on the company’s Get Satisfaction community board.
The Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service are the world’s top sales awards, contact center awards, and customer service awards. More than 1,100 entries from organizations of all sizes and in virtually every industry were submitted to this year’s competition, an increase of 10% over 2012. More than 100 members of eight specialized judging committees determined Stevie Award placements from among the Finalists during final judging this year.
Sears narrows Q4 loss
Hoffman Estates, Ill. — Sears Holding Corp. said its net loss for the quarter ended on Feb. 2 narrowed to $489 million from $2.4 billion a year earlier. Total costs dropped 2.2% to $12.88 billion in the fourth quarter.
Revenue declined 1.8% to $12.26 billion, but beat analysts’ average estimate of $11.77 billion.
Sears results came weeks after the company’s chairman and largest shareholder, Edward Lampert, took the reins as CEO in the wake of the departure of Louis D’Ambrosio, who resigned for a family-related health problem.
Sears domestic’s comparable-store sales improved 0.8% in the fourth quarter and declined 1.4% for the year. Kmart’s same-store store sales declined 3.7% in the fourth quarter and for the year. Sears Canada’s comparable store sales declined 3.8% in the fourth quarter and 5.6% for the year.
The company’s online business grew over 25% in fourth quarter 2012 and 17% for the full year.
"Sears Holdings made progress in 2012 improving the profitability of our business, but we know there’s more work to be done in 2013," said Lampert. "Our focus continues to be on our core customers, our members, and finding ways to provide them value and convenience through Integrated Retail and our Shop Your Way Membership platform. We have invested significantly in our online ecommerce platforms, our membership rewards program and the technology needed to support these initiatives."
In a letter to shareholders, employees and customers, Lampert emphasized improvements the chain has made, including improved clothing sales and its growing loyalty program.
“We demonstrated that the operating performance of the company, while significantly below what it should be, was not on a continued downward trajectory,” Lampert wrote.