PRSM Weekly
Apr. 6, 2012

PRSM Association announces 2012-2013 President and Board of Directors
Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association
The Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association (PRSM) is pleased to announce the election of its Board Officers and Directors for the 2012-2013 term. PRSM is a membership association established to represent individuals and their companies and dedicated to advancing industry awareness of retail facilities maintenance. The Board will be led by incoming President Paul Walsh, director of Strategic Sourcing, Gap, Inc., San Francisco. Walsh will be serving a second term as president as he was elected as the PRSM Association's 2010-2011 Board president previously. "I am honored to be reelected as the Association's president this year and to serve with a talented and passionate board of directors," Walsh said. More

J.C. Penney lays off 600 at Legacy headquarters in Plano, Texas
The Dallas Morning News
J.C. Penney Co.'s headquarters staff reorganization has started. About 600 people were laid April 5. Penney said in a press release it's "reorganizing the workforce at its headquarters in Plano, Texas, where it will be taking a range of actions to realign its management structure." Penney had 5,900 employees at its headquarters as of late January. More than 1,000 of those workers were contractors and many of them are no longer working for Penney.More

Retailers report positive March sales
The Associated Press via Los Angeles Times
Retailers from discounter Target to depart-store chain Macy's reported better-than-expected sales in March in the latest sign that Americans are feeling better about the economy. A combination of warm weather and high demand for spring fashions boosted revenue for the month, but analysts say there's much more than higher temperatures at play. Americans initially cut back on spending during the recession and have continued to hold back in the slow recovery, but in recent months they've been feeling better about the economy as the stock market rises and unemployment falls.More

What's hot in retail — March 2012
National Retail Federation
Retailers witnessed exciting new developments on both the industry and legislative sides in March 2012. This year's unseasonably warm winter continued into March and helped give a noticeable boost to consumers' moods and retailers' sales. On the legislative front, Congress took steps in the right direction to reauthorize federal transportation funding, and the Senate held a hearing that would help boost travel and tourism to the states by reducing the visa application process – both welcome sights to National Retail Federation and retailers alike.More

Facility managers explain how they minimize risks and maximize rewards of new technology
In the consumer market, new technology is almost always a good thing. Whether it's the newest mobile device or this year's cars, new technology is usually a strong selling point. For facility managers, however, the reverse sometimes seems to be true. Facility managers have a reputation for being cautious about new technology. And it's easy to understand why. With perennially tight budgets and products that may remain in place for decades, no one wants to make a mistake.More

Linking store and Web inventory is key for Walgreens
Internet Retailer
Linking store inventory to its e-commerce site is no small task for Walgreen Co., as it has 8,000 physical stores worldwide. But since the retail chain enabled online customers to view local store inventory in the last year, customers have responded positively, says Ron Kelly, vice president of customer and pharmacy service, e-commerce.More

US retailers eye Canada but find space shortage
Reuters via Calgary Herald
The long-awaited expansion of Target Inc into Canada, announced last year, raises the question, why haven’t more big U.S. chains made the seemingly easy move north into a market where established retailers are doing well. One of the biggest obstacles holding them back is a dearth of suitable commercial space in Canada, analysts say, and the difficulties involved in building more shopping malls and free-standing retail locations. More

This is retail: A look at the numbers (and the impact)
National Retail Federation
In this video news brief, National Retail Federation President and CEO Matt Shay discusses why the retail industry is one of the most crucial to our economy and livelihood. More

Eddie Lampert: Retail needs to adapt or die
Retail needs to adapt or die. That was the call to action sounded by Eddie Lampert, founder of ESL Partners, which controls about 60 percent of Sears Holdings, in an interview with CNBC. In a rare media appearance, Lampert said the changes in the retail industry have been great for the consumer, but there is a question about whether it has been great for business.More

US consumer spending jumps, GDP prospects brighten
U.S. consumer spending increased by the most in seven months in February as households shook off a rise in gasoline prices, leading economists to raise forecasts for first-quarter growth. Even with gasoline around $4 a gallon, Americans were more optimistic about the economy's prospects this month than at any other time over the past year, drawing solace from a firming labor market. More

BBBY finishes year off strong
Retailing Today
Bed Bath & Beyond continues to dominate the home and housewares space and reported another quarter of impressive sales and earnings growth. For its fourth quarter ended Feb. 25, the company reported net earnings of $351 million, or $1.48 per diluted share, an increase of approximately 32 percent versus net earnings $283.5 million, or $1.12 per diluted share, in the same quarter a year ago. More

Smart buildings and cities
Environmental Leaders
Buildings with smart systems can identify, and often correct, potential issues without human involvement and in other cases can help on-site staff diagnose problems. With real-time monitoring and control over energy use, air quality and other building functions, systems are able to adjust for changes in weather, occupancy and equipment conditions, saving energy and extending equipment life as well as making engineers and facility staff more productive.More

Canada grocer under Wal-Mart pressure seeks growth in NY
Bloomberg Businessweek
Loblaw Cos., Canada's biggest grocer, opened a flagship store on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue in New York. Shoppers won't find meat and produce at Joe Fresh, however. They'll find $29 women's dresses and $12 men's polos. More

TJX boosts profit outlook on strong March sales
The Associated Press via Boston Herald
TJX Cos., which runs Marshalls, T.J. Maxx and HomeGoods, is increasing its fiscal first-quarter earnings outlook above Wall Street's expectations, citing a better-than-expected 10 percent rise in March sales. More

Canadian retail suppliers getting the goods on Target
The Globe and Mail
Call it a boot camp for Canadian retail suppliers. On a grey winter morning, dozens of vendors headed to a hotel on the outskirts of Toronto to learn the hard facts about dealing with U.S. discount titan Target Corp.More

Gap to get more teens ringing the register
While Gap Inc.'s target demographic may be those ages 25 to 40, the largest U.S. clothing chain may end up benefiting disproportionately from a recovery in teen apparel spending, an analyst said. In a note upgrading the San Francisco-based retailer to overweight from neutral, Piper Jaffray's Jeffrey Klinefelter said spending on fashion for both upper- and average-income teens was up in the double digits for the first time since 2003 and 2004. More