Personnel Updates:
Best Buy has hired Sharon McCollam as its new CFO, CAO.
Best Buy has announced that Exec VP U.S. Operations Tim Sheehan has left the company.
The Container Store has named three new VPs.  Brooke Minteer has been promoted to VP Buying Logistics and Operations.  Joe Wilkinson has been named VP New Store and Remodel Process, Store Facilities and Purchasing.  Audrey Robertson has been promoted to VP Cultural Programs, Community Relations and Social Media.
Books-A-Million, Inc. announced the appointment of Mary Jane Karwoski as VP Human Resources.
Family Dollar Stores has named Colin McGinnis to the position of Senior VP Store Operations Support, Store Development and Procurement.
OfficeMax announced that Kim Feil has been appointed Exec VP and Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer.
Shopko announced that Mike Bettiga has been named interim CEO to replace Paul Jones, who resigned to pursue another opportunity.  A national search is under way to select a new leader for the company.
Staples has named Michael Williams as Senior VP, General Counsel and Secretary.
Tiffany & Co
. is shifting and expanding responsibilities for two executive vice presidents, Beth Canavan and Frederic Cumenal.  Cumenal had been responsible for Tiffany’s businesses in Asia, Japan, Europe and Emerging Markets. Effective immediately, Cumenal will expand his role to assume responsibility for all of Tiffany’s worldwide sales activities.  Canavan, is transitioning from her current responsibilities into a role that will focus on the continued growth of the company’s high-end statement jewelry business through the development of a specialized selling organization.     Walmart announced that Jay Jorgensen has become Walmart’s VP and Global Chief Compliance Officer
Industry Insight:
Ritz Camera & Image LLC, once the largest U.S. chain of specialty camera shops, has closed all operations.
Walmart Canada boldly increased its presence in the country this month with the opening of the most stores in the company’s Canadian history. By the end of October, the company completed thirty real estate projects including two supercenter conversions and 28 new stores, which were formerly Zellers stores.
Williams-Sonoma opened its first store in Quebec, Canada.  There are now eight Williams-Sonoma stores in Canada


Green Initiatives/Sustainability:
Best Buy received its highest score ever from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), which represents 655 institutional investors with $78 trillion in assets, for its performance and approach to the disclosure of climate change information. Best Buy was recognized by the CDP in both the Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI), scoring a 96 for disclosure, and the Carbon Performance Leadership Index (CPLI), scoring an “A” for performance. The combined score of 96A is tied for the second-highest score among S&P 500 companies, and is the highest combined score among retailers. It’s also the highest combined score among all Minnesota-based companies. Best Buy’s goal is to reduce the carbon emissions of Best Buy by 20% in North America by 2020 as a key driver for operational efficiency.
Best Buy’s climate change and carbon reduction strategy is focused on reducing operating costs and risks, assuring business continuity due to weather and/or climate change impacts, and generating value through new business development that provides energy efficiency solutions for our customers. In 2011, process improvements to greenhouse gas impacted activities, store redesign, reduced plugs loads from Energy Star equipment and displays, and lighting retrofits resulted in a 4.3% decrease to the previous year’s emissions.
The CPLI highlights those companies within the S&P 500 Index that have demonstrated a strong approach to climate strategy and emissions reduction in their CDP responses. The CDLI, a key component of CDP’s annual S&P 500 report, highlights the constituent companies within the S&P 500 Index which have displayed a strong approach to information disclosure regarding climate change.
Office Depot has been recognized in Newsweek magazine’s annual Green Rankings as the number one greenest large retailer in the United States for the third consecutive year.
Walmart Stores announced that by the end of 2017 it will buy 70% of the goods it sells in U.S. stores and in U.S. Sam’s Clubs only from suppliers in the United States, China and around the world who use its Sustainability Index to evaluate their products.
This change will involve suppliers who produce goods in categories where the Index, launched in 2009 to measure the sustainability of products, is available. The announcement was made at an event here with government officials, nongovernmental organizations, academics, suppliers and company associates.
In addition, beginning in 2013 Wal-Mart will use the Sustainability Index to influence the design of its U.S. private brand products. The company will also change the way its global sourcing merchants are evaluated; beginning in 2013, these buyers will join key buyers in Wal-Mart U.S. and Sam’s Club who have specific sustainability objectives on their annual evaluations.
Walmart installed a 1 MW Wind Turbine at its distribution center in Red Bluff, Calif.  This is Walmart’s first onsite industrial-sized wind turbine and will generate approximately 2.2 million KWh, providing up to 20 percent of the distribution center’s annual electricity use. The GE SLE 1 MW wind turbine is comparable in height to a typical 20-story building, with a tower measuring 265 feet tall and a blade spanning 250 feet in diameter.
Under the terms of a power purchase agreement with Foundation Windpower, the project will contribute to energy expense savings as well as provide price certainty for the electricity produced. Foundation Windpower installed, owns, and operates the wind turbine while Walmart purchases the power produced at a fixed rate.
Red Bluff was selected for the installation because it provides an environment with good wind conditions and available land already owned by Walmart.
The wind turbine in Red Bluff is one of more than 180 renewable energy efforts underway worldwide as Walmart works towards its goal of being supplied by 100 percent renewable energy. Walmart’s current wind energy projects include:

  • A 90-MW wind farm in West Texas, providing 15 percent of power for over 300 Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs
  • 348 stores in Mexico supplied by wind power, providing 17 percent of energy needs for Walmart de México
  • Wind power provides 100 percent of the electricity needs in fourteen stores in Northern Ireland

Additional wind energy projects include 12 mini wind turbines that power a Walmart store in Worchester, Mass., wind turbine installations at Walmart’s food distribution center in Balzac, Alberta Canada and micro wind installations at the Sam’s Club in Palmdale, Calif.
In addition, Walmart has set a goal to bring solar energy to more than 75 percent of Walmart and Sam’s Club stores in California – approximately 130 stores – by the end of 2013.
Walmart announced new global sustainability initiatives at a conference in China.   The additional initiatives announced at the event will build on the broader sustainability goals Walmart set at the China Sustainability Summit in 2008. The new commitments outlined include:

  • By the end of 2017, Walmart will buy 70% of the goods it sells in U.S. stores and in U.S. Sam’s Clubs only from suppliers in the United States, China and around the world who use the the retailer’s sustainability index to evaluate and share the sustainability of their products. This change will involve suppliers who produce goods in categories where the Index is available.
  • Beginning in 2013, Walmart will use the sustainability index to influence the design of its U.S. private brand products.
  • Walmart will change the way its key global sourcing merchants are evaluated so that sustainability becomes an even more important part of buyers’ day-to-day jobs. Beginning in 2013, these buyers will join key buyers in Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club who already have specific sustainability objectives on their annual evaluations.
  • The Walmart Foundation will grant $2 million to fund The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) and assist in its efforts in launching TSC in China. TSC is an independent research organization. Using the Walmart Foundation grant, TSC China will engage industries, universities and other experts to form a global network of leaders improving sustainability in consumer goods, and will provide tools and resources to help suppliers become more sustainable and competitive. Walmart will use the results of TSC’s independent work to refine its Sustainability Index for use in China.