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Commerical Repairs & Sales

PRSM Weekly
April 17, 2009  
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Six Lessons Wall Street Could Learn From Retailers
from STORES magazine
Itís been 25 years since retail visionary sam walton did the hula on wall street. Clad in a grass skirt and hawaiian shirt and wearing a couple of leis around his neck, walton swiveled his hips and danced down wall street while onlookers, including media, retail analysts and curious bystanders, took in the sight. Six months earlier, Wal-Martís founder had made a bet with company president (and future CEO) David Glass: If Wal-Mart's pre-tax profit margin for the year reached 8 percent of sales, heíd hula down Wall Street to celebrate. More

Roof Connect

General Growth Files Historic Real Estate Bankruptcy
from Reuters
General Growth Properties Inc, the second-largest U.S. mall owner, declared bankruptcy in the biggest real estate failure in U.S. history. Ending months of speculation, General Growth, along with 158 of its 200-plus U.S. malls, filed Chapter 11 while it tries to refinance its debts. More

See related story: General Growth's Reliance on Debt May Allow Rivals to Buy Malls. (Bloomberg)

Hobby Lobby Raises Hourly Minimum Wage to $10
from Wichita Business Journal
Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. has increased the minimum wage for its roughly 9,200 full-time hourly employees to $10 an hour, effective immediately. The action will cost the company an additional $10 million to $15 million a year, spokeswoman Carol Troy said. The company had revenue of $1.8 billion in 2008 and plans to open about 25 stores in 2009. More

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Office Depot Turns a Brighter Shade of Green
from BusinessWire
Office Depot, a leading global provider of office products and services, announced an expanded retail partnership with New Leaf Paper, the nationís leading sustainable paper supplier. Under the partnership, New Leaf Paper will launch a new assortment of 60 environmentally leading stationery, resume paper and envelope products and distribute them exclusively through more than 1,000 Office Depot retail stores across the U.S. More

Major Retailers See Some Light Even in Falling March Sales
from The Dallas Morning News
March retail sales indicate Americans must be sprucing up, planting gardens and maybe planning some outdoor entertaining. Major chain stores posted another sales decline in March, but for the first time in ages, home goods performed better than expected and there was a little uptick in the do-it-yourself aisles. More

Vortex Industries

Pricing in an Economic Crisis − A Numbers Game
from The Gourmet Retailer
In 2008, U.S. consumers experienced a stunning string of economic shocks to the system. Gasoline and food prices shot up as housing prices plummeted. Stock market declines accelerated into crashes as unemployment rose at alarming levels. As $50 trillion of national wealth evaporated, the country and the world slid into the worst economic downturn in generations. Amid these calamities, it's hardly surprising that consumers are changing their behaviors to adapt − cutting back on spending while trying to increase household savings. In his report, "Pricing in an Economic Crisis," Mark Laceky, vice president, North American pricing practice, The Nielsen Company, takes a look at navigating this uncharted territory. More

Talbots Considering Global Sourcing, Importing Firm
from MultiChannel Merchant
The Talbots is looking to get some help in sourcing and importing goods. The struggling womenís apparel and accessories merchant said in a press release itís in discussions and has signed a nonbinding letter of intent with Li & Fung Ltd., the global sourcing and trading firm based in Hong Kong. More

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How Kiva Robots Help Zappos and Walgreen
from BusinessWeek
In a warehouse at the headquarters of Kiva Systems in Woburn, Mass., an ottoman-shaped robot slides beneath a four-shelf storage unit holding an assortment of consumer goods, lifts it, and navigates back to Mick Mountz, the startup's founder and chief executive. Mountz grabs a box of Kellogg's Frosted Mini-Wheats off of the shelf and turns to put it in a shipping box. This is Kiva's demo space, where Mountz shows potential customers what his wireless robotic fulfillment system can do. More

Cutting Corners
from Retail Traffic Magazine
Faced with falling property incomes, owners of retail real estate look for creative ways to slash spending. As Chicago-based Urban Retail Properties gets ready for this year's RECon convention in Las Vegas, the firm is trying to cut expenses in ways big and small. Instead of the more than 30 employees that attended the event last year, Urban will send about two dozen staffers to the conference in 2009. Food services at the Urban Retail booth, which normally include coffee and snacks, will be cut. And the traditional Monday night reception for the firm's friends and clients? That won't be taking place this year. Subscription required.

William Scotsman Inc.

New Research Initiative to Measure Qualitative Effectiveness of In Store Marketing
from Retail Customer Experience
POPAI, the Global Association for Marketing at Retail, is launching retail-level research across multiple trade channels - including supermarkets, drug stores, mass merchandisers and convenience stores - to determine what displays, marketing at retail materials and shelf layouts work best and, most importantly, why and how they turn shoppers into buyers. More

DOE Forms Commercial Real Estate Energy Alliance
from Greener Buildings
The U.S. Department of Energy and 19 commercial real estate companies launched the Commercial Real Estate Energy Alliance Thursday to link building owners to the latest efficiency research and technologies from the agencyís laboratories. With commercial buildings comprising roughly 18 percent of the countryís energy consumption, commercial holdings represent a large opportunity to cut usage. Best practices will be shared and the alliance could serve as an industry voice to advocate for more energy efficient equipment from the nationís building materials suppliers. More

American Project & Repair

Subway Focuses Sustainability on Distribution, Packaging, Construction
from Conserve
After an energy summit three years ago, Subway started looking at ways to reduce the worldwide carbon footprint for the chain's 29,000 locations. One of the first steps was to redesign the company's supply-chain operation, which the company says saves about 1.6 million gallons of diesel fuel a year. It also switched to 100 percent recyclable napkins, helping to save an estimated 140,000 trees annually. By redesigning its shipping packaging, it cut out more than 97,000 pounds of plastic a year. More

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Look Out, H&M − Britain's Topshop Invades New York
from Time magazine
Not since the opening of Fiorucci in the 1970s or Reminiscence in the 1980s has a fast-fashion retail brand made such a splash in Manhattan. Model Kate Moss recently joined Arcadia Group chairman Sir Philip Green to cut the ribbon on British retail chain Topshop's long-awaited U.S. debut, at Broadway and Broome Street in SoHo. Originally scheduled to hit the Big Apple last fall, the delayed flagship opening comes at a time when other relatively inexpensive fashion brands like H&M and Zara are reporting declining sales figures. More


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