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Williams-Sonoma chairman emeritus, former CEO, Howard Lester dies

BY CSA STAFF

San Francisco — W. Howard Lester, chairman emeritus and former CEO of Willliams-Sonoma, died Nov. 15 from cancer at his home in Indian Wells, Calif. He was 75.

Lester purchased the company with a partner in 1978, when it generated $4 million in annual sales and had four stores. During his time as CEO, from 1978 to 2001, and later as chairman, Lester took Williams-Sonoma public and expanded it to 600 stores and more than $3.4 billion in sales, the company said yesterday in a statement.

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Select Target stores to pilot ‘shopkick’ mobile app

BY CSA STAFF

Minneapolis — Target on Tuesday became the first mass-discount retailer to make the shopkick mobile application available to its shoppers. Users of the app will receive points and other rewards, like instant mobile coupons, just for entering Target. The location-based retail app is available in 242 stores in the Chicago; Dallas; Los Angeles; Miami; Minneapolis; New York City and San Francisco/Silicon Valley markets.

"At Target, we recognize our guests are connected through a multitude of mobile and social networking technologies," said Steve Eastman, president, Target.com. "Innovative mobile applications, like shopkick, provide a fun and engaging way for our guests to connect with Target, while earning valuable rewards, which can be easily redeemed for future in-store purchases."

Target will make offers via shopkick on a wide range of everyday items like food and cleaning supplies, to specialty products like electronics and toys. Target is the only current shopkick partner able to deliver scannable mobile coupons to guests for redemption at checkout.

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Levi’s, Wal-Mart and Gap top supply chain compliance survey

BY CSA STAFF

San Francisco — Levi Strauss and Co., Wal-Mart Stores, The Gap, Hanesbrands, Nordstrom, and Gildan Activewear scored highest on survey of global supply chain compliance programs of U.S. apparel brands and retailers released Tuesday by corporate responsibility group As You Sow.

The survey, "Towards a Safe, Just Workplace: Apparel Supply Chain Compliance Programs," features a scorecard and report that provides for the first publicly available comparable baseline data to evaluate the compliance programs of many of the top apparel companies doing business in the United States. The project was designed to provide information on the substance and scope of programs developed to improve factory working conditions.

The report ranks the resources allocated and actions companies are employing on key compliance actions such as factory auditing, remediation, continuous improvement, collaboration, company management accountability, and transparency.

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