Personnel Updates:

Best Buy has named Ron Wilson as its new President and COO of its Canada operations.

Fred’s Inc. announced the departure of Senior VP Finance James B. Brown.

Hancock Fabrics announced that James B. Brown has joined the company as Exec VP and CFO.  Brown will oversee the areas of accounting-finance, loss prevention, IT, human resources, and in addition, will have oversight responsibility to the planning and allocation function.  Prior to joining Hancock, Brown was employed by Fred’s Inc., in Memphis, where he served as Senior VP Finance.

Hastings Entertainment announced that Alan Van Ongevalle has been promoted to President and COO.

HSN has named two key executives to its corporate leadership team. Bill Brand, formerly Exec VP Programming, Marketing and Business Development at HSN, was promoted to Chief Marketing and Business Development Officer for HSN, and Andy Sheldon, formerly Exec VP of TV, Live Events and Creative at HSN, was named Chief Creative Officer for HSN, and General Manager of HSN Productions.

Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores has named Riddianne Kline Senior VP, Chief Marketing and Merchandising Officer.  In addition to retaining her current responsibilities overseeing both marketing and advertising for Jo-Ann, Kline will assume responsibility for the merchandising, product development and inventory management groups., Inc. announced that its CEO and Chairman of the Board Dr. Patrick Byrne will be taking a personal leave of absence for medical reasons. President Jonathan Johnson will serve as Acting CEO during Dr. Byrne’s leave of absence.  Dr. Byrne will remain Chairman of the Board. has named two Co-Presidents, Stormy Simon and David Nielsen.

Simon previously served as Senior VP in charge of customer and partner care. As Co-President, Simon will retain those responsibilities, and will add oversight of warehouse logistics, press relations, social media, and strategic marketing.

Nielsen, most recently was Senior VP of Merchandising and Supply Chain.  He will retain those responsibilities and will add oversight of the additional areas of international sales, talent management, and information technology.

Previously, the company announced that Dr. Patrick Byrne, Chairman of the Board and CEO, would be taking a temporary medical leave of absence as CEO and Jonathan Johnson, President of the company, became acting CEO at that time. With today’s changes, Johnson’s former role as president will transfer, and he will remain acting CEO. announced that: Robert Hughes has been promoted to Senior VP Finance and Risk Management.  Hughes will replace outgoing Senior VP Finance and Risk Management, Stephen Chesnut.  The company also announced that, Saum Noursalehi has become Senior VP of Marketing, a position formerly held by Timothy Dilworth who will be leaving the company.

Target named Scott Kennedy President of Target Financial and Retail Service to replace long time finance executive Terry Scully.  Scully spent nearly 35 years with Target and is moving into a strategic advisory role to ensure the smooth transition of the recently sold credit card portfolio to TD Bank Group.

Toys “R” Us has announced that Gerald L. Storch is stepping down as CEO of the company.  Storch will remain in his position as Chairman of the Board, providing strategic guidance and playing a key role in its growth initiatives. He also will remain in the chief executive role while the company searches for a replacement.

Tuesday Morning has named former Michaels Stores President and CEO, Michael Rouleau as its interim CEO.  In his role as interim CEO, Rouleau will manage the company’s day-to-day operations through the retention of a new CEO. He will continue to serve on the company’s board of directors, which he joined in November 2012.

Rouleau succeeds Brady Churches, who has resigned as Tuesday Morning’s CEO but will remain with the company in a consultative capacity. The company has engaged Spencer Stuart, a global executive search firm, to assist the board in the process to identify a permanent CEO.

Walmart Foundation President Sylvia Mathews Burwell has been named Director of Office of Management and Budget by President Obama.

Walmart announced that Enrique Ostale, President and CEO of Walmart Chile, has been named Exec VP, President and CEO of Walmart Latin America.. Eduardo Solorzano has retired as President and CEO of Walmart Latin America.
Gian Carlo Nucci, most recently Exec VP and COO of Walmart de Mexico, has been named to replace Ostale as President and CEO of Walmart Chile.

Walmart announced that Tom Mars, Exec VP and CAO, has left the company.


Financial Focus:

Best Buy Co., Inc. announced results for the 53-week fiscal year ended February 2, 2013 (“FY13”), as compared to the 52-week fiscal year ended January 28, 2012.  Total revenues decreased to $49.6 billion from $50 billion.

Big Lots, Inc. reported total sales of $5.4 billion, an increase of 3.8% compared to fiscal 2011.

Build-A-Bear Workshop, which is in the midst of a major turnaround initiative, reported total revenue of $380.9 million in 2012, down 3% from the previous year.

Dollar Tree, Inc. reported that for fiscal year 2012, the company’s consolidated net sales were $7.39 billion, an 11.5% increase compared with 2011 sales of $6.63 billion

Hastings Entertainment reported that total revenues for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2013 decreased approximately $33.9 million, or 6.8%, to $462.5 million compared to $496.4 million for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2012.

HSN, Inc. reported that net sales for the full year ended December 31, 2012 increased to $ 3.27 billion, an increase of 6% from the previous $ 3.07 billion.

Michaels Stores reported that net sales for fiscal 2012 increased 4.7% to $4.408 billion from $4.210 billion in fiscal 2011.

PetSmart, Inc. reported financial results for the fiscal year 2012.  Total sales for the year were $6.8 billion, up 11%,

RadioShack announced that for the full year, the company has reported that total net sales and operating revenue were $4.3 billion, compared with $4.4 billion last year.

Sam’s Club reported fiscal year-end sales rose 4.9% to $56.4 billion from $53.8 billion.

Staples reported that total company sales for the full year 2012 decreased 1% to $24.4 billion compared with full year 2011. Excluding the favorable impact of the extra week in 2012, total company sales decreased 3% to $23.9 billion versus the prior year.

Target Corporation reported that full-year 2012 sales increased 5.1 percent to $71.96 billion from $68.5 billion in 2011.

Walmart corporate announced that full year sales increased by 5% to $466.1 billion compared to last year’s total of $443.8.  This includes all operations, domestic and international.  Walmart U.S. increased annual sales by 3.9 % to $274.5 billion.


Industry Insight:

Leslie’s Poolmart, Inc. announced the opening of13 new retail locations throughout the U.S. on March 15th.  In total, Leslie’s plans to open 48 new stores this year between March and May.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory has opened five locations in Japan within a year of signing a Master License Agreement that anticipates the opening of 100 stores in Japan over a ten-year period.

Target announced that it would open its first three pilot stores in Canada in three Ontario towns.  The stores in Guelph, Milton and Fergus are the first of 124 opening across the country this year.  They are the first in a wave of 24 soft openings across Ontario in March.

Target is planning a rollout in Canada that will be bigger than any single year’s worth of its store openings in the United States ever. The company plans to open its first 24 Canadian stores in April and have a total of 124 stores in Canada opened this year. A smaller but still significant rollout also is planned for the United States, with plans to open 15 to 20 new stores, including three new City Target stores, for a total of 10 to 15 net new stores when accounting for closings, as well as remodeling more than 100 stores. Chairman, President and CEO Gregg Steinhafel said the five existing City Target stores already had experienced “robust” traffic.

Target is planning to open 14 new clinics around the country, for a total of 68

Walmart will open as many as 115 small-format stores this year.


Green Initiatives/Sustainability:

Office Depot has been recognized by the EPA’s Center for Corporate Climate Leadership with a Climate Leadership Goal Achievement Award for Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management. The award was also presented by the Association of Climate Change Officers the Center for Climate & Energy Solutions, and The Climate Registry.

The Goal Achievement Award recognizes organizations that publicly report and verify Greenhouse Gas (GHG) inventories and achieve aggressive reduction goals. In 2010, in collaboration with EPA’s former Climate Leaders program, Office Depot adopted a goal of reducing U.S. GHG emissions by 20% by 2012, with 2007 as a baseline year. By the end of 2011, Office Depot had achieved a 29% reduction in the U.S. versus its baseline year.

Walmart completed three new solar power installations at Walmart stores in Hawaii that are expected to generate huge amounts of electricity.

The three stores in Kahului, Kailua-Kona and Kapolei, double the total number of stores in Hawaii powered by renewable solar energy and join existing installations that are already operational atop the Honolulu Sam’s Club and Mililani Walmart on Oahu, and the Lihue Walmart on Kauai.

During the first full year of production, the 311 kilowatt solar power rooftop system on each store will produce more than 400,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of solar electricity. Each rooftop system will eliminate 320 metric tons of CO2e annually. That means the three systems combined, over a 10-year period will eliminate 9600 metric tons. One year of operation for each rooftop system is equivalent to removing 67 cars off the road for one year. That means the three systems combined will remove the equivalent of 2,010 cars over a 10-year period.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has installed 12 solar arrays at Sam’s Club and Walmart stores throughout Ohio.  The installations are expected to supply about 5 percent to 20 percent of each store’s overall electricity use.

Walmart’s Neighborhood Market in Mt. Pleasant, Wis., opening later this year, will join the small but growing ranks of stores that are lit entirely with LEDs. The chain is installing LED technology, including more than 400 linear luminaires (CS18), for illumination – from the sales floor and pharmacy to restrooms, vestibules and backroom areas. LED lighting will also be installed in the parking lot and exterior areas of the store.  Walmart estimates that CS18 suspended luminaires, designed for low maintenance and long life, will save approximately 30% in energy costs compared to interior fluorescent lighting. Lasting more than three times longer than standard fluorescents, the luminaires will also enable significant maintenance reductions and energy savings for the store.