Content about Commerce

August 17, 2012

Expectations are high that mobile payments represent the future of commerce, and a group of leading retailers this week formed a new organization to offer an alternative way to pay.

The group, Merchant Customer Exchange, will integrate a range of consumer offers, promotions and retail programs available via any smartphone. Participating retailers include Wal-Mart, Lowe's, Sears Holdings Corp. and Target. Additional members are expected to be announced in the coming months.  

August 16, 2012

Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Holdings reported a second-quarter net loss of $132 million, compared with a loss of $146 million in the year-ago period.

August 7, 2012

Orchard Supply Hardware will open a 50,000-sq.-ft. store in Torrance, Calif., showcasing the company’s new store format. 

The South Bay store at 19330 Hawthorne Blvd., the site of a former Kmart store, will open Sept. 1 and marks the company’s 89th store in the state of California.

July 31, 2012

Lowe’s made an offer, but RONA refused.

The two North American home improvement giants will continue to operate as competitors in Canada, where Lowe’s has been growing organically for the past several years amid rumors that just such an acquisition play was in the cards.

July 2, 2012

Described as a big win for advocates of a level retail playing field, Amazon.com began collecting sales tax in Texas July 1.

“A true free market is devoid of government preferences and special treatment,” said Sandy Kennedy, president of the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA). “Texas has made a powerful statement that it's time to end special treatment for online retailers and close the sales tax loophole that gives companies like Amazon an artificial leg up on Main Street retailers.”

June 18, 2012

An off-duty police officer in central New Jersey was convicted of shoplifting in a jury trial on June 14, according to a press release issued by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s office. 

Darnell Esdaile, 46, a Freehold Borough police office, was arrested at Home Depot in Freehold Township on Nov. 11, 2010. He was detained by loss prevention officers after exiting the store with laminate flooring he had not paid for. The merchandise was valued at approximately $500.

June 6, 2012

A report by Jack L. Hayes International, a loss prevention and inventory shrinkage control consulting firm, found that both shoplifting and stealing by employees are increasing, although the latter is growing at a faster clip. An annual survey of large retailers found that shoplifter apprehensions and recovery dollars rose 5.8% in 2011, while the same measurements applied to dishonest employees increased 11.4%.

May 17, 2012

Sears Holdings Corp. has announced plans to pursue a partial spinoff of its interest in Sears Canada.

The move will reduce the Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Holdings’ stake in Sears Canada from 95% to about 51%, the company said. 

April 27, 2012

Whether it’s a product designed to bring efficiency to the home, save time for the DIYer or allow a consumer a chance to feel good about buying a Made-in-the-USA product, show organizers have taken steps to give permanence to the show-floor activity.

The May 1 to 3 event at the Las Vegas Convention Center will see a few new twists.

For the first time at the show, a “Made in the USA Pavilion” will showcase domestic-made products.

April 25, 2012

In a victory for foreign-based manufacturers, the U.S. International Trade Commission has ruled that LG Electronics and its affiliates were not guilty of “dumping” certain refrigerator models on the U.S. market. The 5-0 vote ended a year-old investigation initiated by Whirlpool, which claimed that bottom-mount refrigerators made in Mexico and Korea were sold in the United States at below market value.

March 23, 2012

An article about a U.S. Commerce Department ruling that some imported bottom-mount refrigerators were sold at prices unfair to American competitors led to several letters.

“There is no way that free enterprise businesses can compete and win against companies being underwritten by their countries.

“There is a core group of Americans who are being ignored in this NEW GLOBAL FREE TRADE economy. Not everyone can go to college or be trained for high tech jobs.

March 15, 2012

According to an article in the Chicago Tribune, the closing of 43 Sears hometown dealer stores and 10 Sears Hardware stores are planned for the first half of 2012.

The latest revelation on Sears' plans to cut its expenses and transform its business came from its annual report, which was released late Wednesday. 

March 2, 2012

Robert and Vicki Amberg, owners of Gerstner Hardware in Glenn, Mich., recently proved their commitment to their surrounding community by re-locating a nearby Post Office designated to close and incorporating it into their store.

The story reminded me of my Uncle Jerry, proprietor of an independent store stuffed with hardware SKUs and located in South Newfane, Vt.

February 27, 2012

Sears quietly added all nine of its Great Indoors stores to the list of store closings on Feb. 23.

Store managers were informed on Thursday, a Sears spokeswoman confirmed, but no exact date has been given for the closings.  

The upscale remodeling and home décor stores began opening in 1998, long before the Sears and Kmart merger. At one point, Sears operated 20 of the units, but they were never a big moneymaker for the company. 

February 23, 2012

Sears Holdings Corp. has reported a loss of $2.4 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with a profit of $374 million in the year-ago period. And in a move long anticipated by some analysts, the chain also announced plans to tap into its massive real estate holdings to help make up for its faltering retail performance.

Revenue slipped 4% to $12.5 billion from $13 billion. Same-store sales fell 4.1% during the quarter at Sears and 2.7% at Kmart.

February 1, 2012

According to an article in the Evening Standard, a former Sears and Best Buy executive will lead the multi-channel, 750-store Argos. 

John Walden is taking over on a mission described as a turn-around effort and an uphill battle. He replaces Sara Weller, who last year left the top spot at Argus, a division of Home Retail.

January 27, 2012

The PayPal pilot at Home Depot stores is rapidly expanding, going from 51 test locations in the San Francisco Bay Area this week to all 2,000 Home Depot stores by the end of March, according to Bloomberg News.

PayPal director of communications Anuj Nayar told Bloomberg the digital commerce company will extend the trial to 20 additional retail partners by the end of 2012.

January 23, 2012

John Donahoe, president and CEO of eBay, during a Jan. 18 earnings call expanded on the test of PayPal with retailer Home Depot. 

A division of EBay, PayPal is experimenting with extending its on-line payment system to point-of-sale retail locations. In the fourth quarter of 2011, it chose Home Depot as its first national retailer for a limited test at five stores. PayPal plans to widen the pilot to 51 stores in the Bay Area by the end of the month, Donahoe said.

He explained to investors how the payment process worked by relating his own experience.

January 12, 2012

The European DIY-Retail Association (EDRA) added seven new members in 2011, bringing the latest tally to 92 home center companies. 

In its end-of-year message, EDRA General Secretary John W. Herbert, described the day-to-day routine of the group, now in its second year as an independent association. "We are heavily involved at our Cologne office dealing with the increasing number of network inquiries from our members, which include company and store visits, statistics, best practices and trends."

January 5, 2012

The Mooresville, N.C.-based home improvement retailer's MyLowe's online product will be on display at the 2012 International CES show in Las Vegas.

The tech features of MyLowe's include a card or key fob to track in-store purchases online; a digital home profile to create rooms and store floor dimensions, product details and notes for the home; and folders to organize projects and ideas.

The Jan. 10-12 consumer electronics show is one of the biggest trade fair's in the country. 

 

 

January 3, 2012

Sears Holdings hired Ron Boire as executive VP and chief merchandising officer. Boire, who previously was president and CEO of Brookstone, will lead merchandising and retail stores for both the Sears and Kmart brands.  

He will work with the company's leadership team to better serve its customers and Shop Your Way Rewards Members by integrating their experiences across stores, online, services and mobile capabilities, the company said.

December 30, 2011

Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Holdings has identified 80 of the 100 to 120 stores it plans to close as part of a strategy it announced earlier this week.

The list of 80 stores-to-be-closed includes 39 Kmart stores, 25 Sears full-line stores, and 14 Grand/Essentials and two Sears Hardlines Only stores. The list can be seen here.

December 29, 2011

Mooresville, N.C.-based Lowe’s acquired ATG Stores, an online retailer of home improvement and lifestyle products based in Kirkland, Wash. 

The acquisition, announced Thursday morning, "underscores Lowe’s commitment to providing an endless aisle of products," the company said. The move is part of an effort to boost the retailer's online and multichannel presence.

December 27, 2011

Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Holdings plans to close 100 to 120 Kmart and Sears full-line stores after reporting a disappointing recent performance. The Tuesday morning announcement -- contained in a press release titled "Sears Holdings Provides Update" --  reported a 5.2% comp-store sales decline for the quarter-to-date period, and a 2.6% decline in the year-to-date period, ended Dec. 25. 

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