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Workforce reduction confirmed at Albertsons

BY CSA STAFF

FULLERTON, Calif. — A store-level workforce reduction is planned for Albertsons’ Southern California division.

The Supervalu subsidiary said 2,200 to 2,500 positions would be eliminated across all Albertsons stores in California and Nevada and is expected to directly impact a small number of positions at any specific store location. The company said the workforce reduction aims to "[simplify] its organization and reducing expenses to help reinvest in more customer facing initiatives" and added that "Albertsons has not kept pace with the changing needs of its customers for a number of reasons."

"A decision of this nature is never easy, but it is the necessary step for us to take to help improve our business and accelerate our turnaround," Albertsons’ Southern California division president Dan Sanders said. "Our goal is to more effectively serve the marketplace by scheduling associates more appropriately to serve customers at the times they shop. I am confident our team will embrace these changes and help us to compete more effectively in a rapidly changing marketplace."

The workforce reduction will go into effect the week of June 17 and should be completed near July 1, the company said.

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Best Buy chairman resigns to explore options for ownership stake

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS — Best Buy founder Richard Schulze has decided to step down as chairman of the board in order to pursue other options for his ownership stake.

Schulze served as Best Buy’s CEO, chairman and a director until 2002. He retained is chairman and director role since 2002 and controls about 20.1% of the company. He had previously planned to step down as chairman after the 2012 annual meeting on June 21, 2012 and to remain as a director through the 2013 annual meeting.

“I continue to believe in Best Buy and its future — and care deeply about its customers, employees and shareholders. There is an urgent need for Best Buy to reinvigorate growth by reconnecting with today’s customers and building pathways to the next generation of consumers. Accordingly, I have shared my views with the board and today informed them of my decision to resign as chairman and a director, effective immediately, in order to explore all available options for my ownership stake,” said Schulze.

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Spider-Man exclusives swing into Walmart

BY CSA STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark — Walmart has teamed up with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and Marvel Entertainment to offer customers the ultimate Spider-Man experience weeks before the release of The Amazing Spider-Man, in theaters July 3.

During the month of June, Walmart will offer a number of exclusive offerings including screening of never-before-seen footage fromThe Amazing Spider-Man on its instore broadcast network at various times throughout the day on June 15 and 16. The company is also offering The Amazing Spider-Man Comic Book with Exclusive Sneak Peek Combo Pack on June 15 for only $2.96. The combo pack includes a collectible reproduction of "The Amazing Spider-Man #6" comic book that features the first appearance of The Lizard, behind the scenes footage from The Amazing Spider-Man, a never-before-seen scene from the film, a first look at the Activision Spider-Man video game and a bonus augmented reality (AR) activation when using our "Web-slinger" app.

At approximately 1,000 Walmart stores, fans will have the chance to get even more Spider-Action via cusomized spider-man trucks. At each location, customers will receive an advanced demo of "The Amazing Spider-Man" video game and Spider-Man Bonkazonks from Hasbro. The tour will also include: Sony PS3 gaming consoles, HP photo centers, Kellogg’s tasting center, Straight Talk Wireless demos and a climbing wall, at select locations. The tour schedule can be found at: www.walmart.com/Spider-Man.

Taking the interactive experience even further, Walmart is offering an exclusive "Web-Slinger" augmented reality app. Available at the iTunes App Store or Android Market starting June 15, this app enables customers to take photos with a life-size Spider-Man and unlock levels and weapons at multiple locations within the store starting June 26. Unlock locations include Kellogg’s Cheez-It & Pop-Tarts displays in grocery, the Straight Talk Wireless section in electronics, signage in toys and boys apparel. Fans can also engage in the AR experience during the "Secrets Unmasked Tour," where Spider-Man and The Lizard come to life on the top of the truck.

"We’re always looking for ways to bring innovative technology, exclusive content and interactive events to our customers," said Seong Ohm, SVP and general merchandise manager for entertainment, Walmart U.S. "Movie fans can rest assured that Walmart will have the broadest assortment of the Super Hero products they want – from special-edition movie releases to toys, food and apparel – all at an amazing low price."

Available now in Walmart stores across the U.S., customers can purchase more than 1,000 "The Amazing Spider-Man" licensed products from action figures and t-shirts to video games and home decor. A few items include, The Amazing Spider-Man:

  • Electronic Action Figure (Marvel/Hasbro) – $15.97

  • Hero FX Mask (Marvel/Hasbro) – $19.97

  • Hero FX Glove (Marvel/Hasbro) – $14.96

  • Boys and Young Men’s tees: $6.97 – $7.50

  • Twin Sheet Set and Twin/Full Comforter: $15.88 – $26.88

Walmart will also sell the new Blu-ray with UltraViolet editions of Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2, and Spider-Man 3. The Spider-Man Blu-ray includes two never-before-seen bonus features "Spider Sense Over Movie Trivia Game" and "The Spider-Man Cutting Room." The Spider-Man 2 Blu-ray includes both the previously released theatrical and extended version of the film, with additional footage and fight sequences not seen in theaters. Each edition includes new collectible packaging.

For more information on The Amazing Spider-Man Secrets Unmasked Tour and Comic Book with Sneak Peek, visit www.walmart.com/spider-man or visit the iTunes App Store or Android Market to download the "Web-Slinger" App.

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