CHICAGO (Reuters) – Mammoth enterprises are not the way for Corporate America to grow anymore and smaller deals are what companies are betting on, an M&A executive said.
“We’re in an incredibly robust market for financing and we’re seeing … deals getting done every week,” Greg Pearlman, head of BMO Capital Markets’ food and consumer group, said at the Reuters Global Food and Agriculture Summit in Chicago on Monday.
(Reuters) – Ann Inc (ANN.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) forecast improved margins, and outlined plans to improve the performance and brand image of its struggling Ann Taylor stores, sending shares up as much as 8.7 percent.
Ann Taylor is the company’s higher-end brand, catering to professional women in their 30s and beyond. Ann sells more affordable clothes for younger women at LOFT, which has been its growth area.
By Nivedita Bhattacharjee
(Reuters) – Genevieve Spinella sold her Lincoln Navigator in August and bought a more fuel efficient Kia Soul as gasoline prices began weighing on her mind.
She is also staying closer to home when she goes out and runs errands with her family to save on gas.
(Reuters) – Gap Inc’s (GPS.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) profit forecast for the year ahead failed to excite investors, but the company did lay down concrete plans for a revamp as it tries to work on its merchandise and move away from the heavy discounts seen in the holiday quarter.
For almost a decade now, Gap has struggled with its fashion mix, losing out to rivals such Inditex, which overtook Gap as the world’s biggest clothing retailer by sales in 2010.
Feb 22 (Reuters) – Chico’s FAS Inc reported a
21 percent rise in holiday quarter earnings that beat estimates,
as strong demand for its pricier White House Black Market and
Soma Intimates brands offset big discounts at its namesake
division, sending its shares up 12 percent premarket.
The retailer, which like Ann Inc caters to women
over 35, has benefited from increased traffic after redoing its
clothing line, and as a result, Chico’s forecast strong sales
trends for this year.
(Reuters) – Department store chains Macy’s Inc (M.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Saks Inc (SKS.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) both expect sales gains this year, helped by improving incomes for both the middle-class and well-to-do, sending the companies’ shares up in morning trade.
Macy’s was helped again by the broad array of exclusive and private brands that led to a higher profit in the holiday quarter, while luxury department store Saks Inc sold more at full price and was also helped by its focus on private label brands.
(Reuters) – At least one cold-weather clothing maker was able to keep its cool during the unusually warm winter this year.
VF Corp (VFC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), whose outdoor gear brands include The North Face and Smartwool, posted higher-than-expected quarterly earnings on Thursday as last year’s Timberland acquisition helped drive sales up 37 percent.
(Reuters) – For all the questions over whether Gap Inc (GPS.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) can turn around its business after years of disappointing sales, it might still be a good retail stock to bet on this year.
Some analysts and investors say Gap’s thick stash of cash and cheap valuation make it a good investment even if sales continue to decline a few percentage points this year, pointing to $500 million in costs that were taken out from fiscal 2007 through 2010.