Personnel Updates

Advance Auto Parts has announced that Todd Greener has been named Senior VP Supply Chain, in its efforts to support Advance Auto Parts stores and customers. announced that the former press secretary for President Barack Obama, Jay Carney, has joined the company as Senior VP of Worldwide Corporate Affairs.

Five Below elevated Joel Anderson to the role of CEO to add to his title as President.  He has replaced Tom Vellios as CEO at Five Below.   Mr. Vellios has moved on to the position of Executive Chairman.  With these moves co-founder and Executive Chairman David Schlessinger, has relinquished his chairmanship and will remain on the board of directors.

Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores has named a new chief executive after announcing the search for a new leader in August.  The company announced the appointment of Jill Soltau as President, CEO and a member of the board of directors of the company.  Jim Kerr, who served as interim CEO, will continue as Exec. VP and CFO of the company.  Soltau joins Jo-Ann with more than 25 years of diverse experience in the retail industry. She most recently served as president of Shopko.

Petland has hired Tony Samples as VP Corporate Stores as the pet supply retailer looks to expand its national footprint.

PetSmart officially changed ownership and went private.  The company is also made a leadership move.  The company has named Michael J. Massey as its President and CEO, effective immediately.  Massey, replaced David Lenhardt, who stepped down upon the closing of private equity firm BC Partners’s acquisition of the pet supplies retailer.

Target announced that Aaron Alt, former Senior VP and Treasurer of Target, has been named CEO of Target Canada to oversee the company’s shut down.

Target Canada President Mark Schindele will return to the company’s U.S. operation and assume a new position of Senior VP of Retail Properties.


Financial Focus

Best Buy Co., Inc. announced results for the year ended January 31, 2015 (“FY15”), as compared to the previous year ended February 1, 2014.  Annual revenues for the recently completed fiscal year came in at $40.3 billion.

Big Lots reported annual financials for the fiscal year ended January 31, 2015.  Annual net sales for the company were $5.2 billion.

Build-A-Bear Workshop Inc. reported results for the fiscal year ended January 3, 2015. Total revenues were $392.4 million compared to $379.1 million in fiscal 2013 (52 weeks ended December 28, 2013);

Dollar General reported that for the full year, sales increased 8% to $18.9 billion and same store sales increased 2.8%.

Dollar Tree announced that for fiscal year 2014, the company’s consolidated net sales increased 9.7% to $8.60 billion from $7.84 billion for the prior year.

HSN, Inc. reported results for the full year ended December 31, 2014.  Net sales increase to $3.59 billion from $3.4 billion for the previous year, an increase of five percent.

Kirkland’s, Inc. reported financial results for the 52-week periods ended January 31, 2015.  Net sales for the 52 weeks ended January 31, 2015, increased 10.2% to $507.6 million compared with $460.6 million for the 52 weeks ended February 1, 2014. Comparable store sales for fiscal 2014, including e-commerce sales, increased 6.1% compared with a 0.5% increase in fiscal 2013. The Company opened 34 stores and closed 14 during fiscal 2014.

Kmart announced that annual sales for the fiscal year ending January 31, 2015 came in at $12.074 billion.  This reflects a decrease from the previous year’s $13.194 billion for the fiscal year ending February 1, 2014.  For the same period, the company’s total store count decreased from 1,152 as of February, 2014 to the current 979.

Office Depot, Inc. formed by the merger of Office Depot and OfficeMax Incorporated, announced results for the year ended December 27, 2014.  Office Depot’s reported results for the fiscal year ended December 27, 2014 include the financial results from OfficeMax, whereas prior year reported results include only OfficeMax’s operations from November 5, 2013, the date of the merger, through December 28, 2013. Annual sales came in at $16.1 billion up from the pre-merger total of $11.2 billion for the previous fiscal year.

PetSmart announced that for the fiscal year, net sales increased 2.8% to $7.1 billion.

Staples, Inc. announced the results for its fiscal year ended January 31, 2015. Annuall company sales totaled $22.5 billion for the year, down 2.7% from the previous year’s total of $23.1 billion.

Sam’s Club announced its annual financial results for the fiscal year ended January 30, 2015.  Annual sales increased 1.5% to $58.0 billion from 57.2 billion for the previous fiscal year.

Target Corporation announced that full-year 2014 sales increased to $72.6 billion from the previous year..

Walmart announced its annual financial results for the fiscal year ended January 30, 2015.  Annual sales increased 3.1% to $288.0 billion from 279.4 billion for the previous fiscal year.


Mergers and Acquisitions

PetSmart’s investors have officially approved a buyout of the company by a private equity firm, setting up a payout to stockholders of $83 per share. PetSmart, Inc. announced that its stockholders approved the acquisition of PetSmart by a consortium led by BC Partners, Inc. and including La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, affiliates of StepStone Group LP and Longview Asset Management, LLC at its special meeting of stockholders held March 6, 2015. The buyout means PetSmart has become a private company.


Industry Insight

Alco Stores, after exhaustive going-out-of-business sales has officially closed down operations.  Alco was founded 113 years ago.  The company filed for bankruptcy on October 12.

Build-A-Bear Workshop Inc. closed 15 stores and opened 16 locations to end the year with 265 company-owned stores in North America.

Dollar General has entered into Oregon, Maine and Rhode Island by opening its first ever stores in those states.  The retailer is less than 300 stores shy of opening its 1,200th location.

Dollar General will add to its 2014 year end store total of 11,789 units in 2015 by opening 730 new stores and remodeling 875 others.

Five Below announced its initial entry into Alabama with the opening of its first stores in Huntsville, Florence and Gadsden on Friday, March 13th.

Kirkland’s, Inc. announced that for the 52-week period ending January 30, 2016 (“fiscal 2015”), the company expects to achieve approximately 8% to 10% square footage growth with 35 to 40 new store openings and 10 to 15 store closings. New store openings are expected to be weighted toward the second and third quarters of the year, and store closings are expected to be spread evenly throughout the year.

Kmart announced that the company’s total store count decreased from 1,152 as of February, 2014 to the current 979.