Unstructured Finance

Starbucks: Decaf Via coming soon

October 12, 2009

starbucks20via20ready20brewStarbucks says it will start selling a decaf version of its Via instant coffee in the United States on Nov 17.

Liz picks Penney; Isaac takes TV

October 8, 2009

mizrahiJC Penney stores in the United States and Puerto Rico are going exclusive with Liz Claiborne Inc’s namesake brand and celebrity designer Isaac Mizrahi will sell his upscale Liz Claiborne New York line only on QVC, a TV shopping network.

A brighter view doesn’t lead to increased spending

October 7, 2009

paying-billAmericans may have become more confident in the economy but they haven’t started spending heavily again — and that could be bad new for retailers this holiday season.

Check Out Line: A glimmer of holiday optimism

September 28, 2009

USA/Check Out this slightly more optimistic holiday sales forecast.

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) said the 2009 U.S. holiday season is likely to be “a lot better” than last year, with sales rising roughly 1 to 2 percent.

J.C. Penney discounts go mobile

September 24, 2009

jcpenneyJ.C. Penney discounts are going mobile as the department store takes aim at younger, tech-savvy shoppers.

Check Out Line: Crowd at top of Aerospostale

September 24, 2009

aeropostale1Check out who’s in charge at Aeropostale
 
No, seriously, who is in charge?
 
The company announced today that Julian Geiger was leaving the teen apparel retailer. (The press release was apparently written under the auspices of the Lawyers Full Employment Act.)
 
But instead of appointing one leader, Aeropostale went with co-CEOs. President and Chief Merchandising Officer Mindy Meads and Chief Operating Officer Thomas Johnson were named to share the top spot.
 
The news release does not detail how Meads and Johnson will divide the CEO duties.
 
What we do know is that the history of corporate America is punctuated with co-CEO arrangements that have gone awry.
 
When Kraft was spun out from Altria in 2001, Roger Deromedi and Betsy Holden were named co-CEOs. The relationship ended with Holden being demoted in late 2003, and eventually leaving the company. Kraft continued to struggle with lackluster innovation and seemingly ever-present restructuring, and Deromedi was out by 2006.
 
John Reed and Sanford Weill ran Citigroup together for a while before falling out. Reed even left the corporate world for a time.
 
A deep executive bench is always a plus, but in the end, one person at the top seems to be the final answer.
 
Also in the basket:
 
Rite Aid cuts view after latest loss; shares skid
 
H&M August sales disappoint as shoppers hunt for bargains
 
Buffett sings praises of a Chinese suit (WSJ)

Carl’s Jr CEO sees gold in Lone Star state

September 17, 2009

texas1Andy Puzder, chief executive of Carl’s Jr and Hardee’s parent CKE Restaurants, is not a man to mince words and on Thursday he shared his views on “socialist type” state governments in California and Oregon. 
     
Many of the company’s Carl’s Jr restaurants are located in the Golden State, and Puzder has plans to lessen that exposure over time. 

Thrifty tips from Starbucks

September 11, 2009

barista1In its battle to end the myth of the $4 Starbucks coffee — the world’s biggest cafe chain is offering tips on how to save money in its cafes, which are lowering prices on some beverages as they battle market newcomer McDonald’s.

Is your Starbucks saved from the hit list?

September 11, 2009

coronastarbucks3Starbucks Chief Financial Officer Troy Alstead earlier this week had some good news for its fans in places like Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Mobile, Alabama, and El Segundo, California.

Check Out Line: Thinking about Black Friday deals

September 10, 2009

USA/
Check Out this prediction about Black Friday deals.

Black Friday, the day after the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday that typically kicks off the holiday shopping season, is known for some of the best discounts of the year, both in stores and on the Web.