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Marianne Wilson



January 2021

Mike Schodowski
As e-commerce has accelerated, so had the demand for warehouse space. According to a report from CBRE, nearly 14 million square feet of big-box retail space in the U.S. has been converted to industrial space.
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March 2021

Brides, bridesmaids, grooms and groomsmen will soon be able to shop for their wedding attire under the same roof. 

The Michaels Companies is being acquired in a deal that values the arts-and-crafts retailer at $5 billion. 

Two of the nation’s leading retail groups are reiterating their support for mask-wearing in the wake of several states dropping their mask mandates. 

Dollar Tree reported Q4 sales that missed Street estimates and said it is ramping up its store growth and remodeling, with a push for a new format that combines both its banners. 

Bed Bath & Beyond is moving ahead with its big push into store brands, a critical part of the chain’s turnaround strategy.

The Kroger Co. is holding firm to its nationwide mask mandate even as some states loosen their restrictions. 

Target Corp. will build on its record 2020 sales growth by making big annual investments to continue scaling capabilities across its online and brick-and-mortar retail platform.

Target Corp. ended an impressive year on a strong note, with sales and earnings that topped analysts’ estimates as the discounter got a boost from holiday spending and $600 stimulus checks.

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. reported fourth-quarter earnings and sales that beat Wall Street expectations as it continued to trim its store portfolio.

With customer and employee wellness top of mind, Chain Store Age will present a webinar on Tuesday, March 9 at 2 p.m., on how touchless products can contribute to a restroom’s overall good hygiene.

Macy’s Inc. is making some changes to its senior leadership team as the company continues to overhaul its business in response to changing consumer behavior. 

Chico’s FAS reported disappointing fourth-quarter sales and gave an update on store closings and its plans to roll out in-store Soma shops.

Paper Source Inc. has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection with a plan to sell itself.

Kohl’s Corp. ended a tough year on an upbeat note.

Walmart’s expansion into finance continues to ramp up with the reported hiring of two heavy hitters.

Dick’s Sporting Goods continues to expand its national footprint.

Publix ended the year on a strong note as the ongoing pandemic continued to drive sales.

Nordstrom is jumping into the at-home fitness trend.

Travel retailer Hudson has opened the doors to its new contactless shopping format, Hudson Nonstop.

Mike Donnelly

A 42-year Kroger veteran is stepping down.

Amazon Go is moving across the pond.

February 2021

REI Co-op’s first satellite office will be surrounded by trail networks and “sandwiched” between two parks.

George Goldfarb

The chief executive of Maurices is retiring.

Online grocery shopping is moving from a first-time trial to a habit for many U.S. shoppers.

Foot Locker reported a mixed end to the year, with profit that expectations but sales that disappointed, including a 2.7% drop in same-store sales. 

DHL Express wants to make it more convenient for customers to ship their goods — without even having to leave their cars. 

Payless is back in the brick-and-mortar business in North America.

Target Corp.’s newest shop-in-shop initiative is with a tech giant.

Best Buy Co.’s fourth-quarter earnings topped expectations but its revenue fell short as sales growth started to slow from earlier in the pandemic.

Sephora is embarking on the largest store expansion plan in its 21-year history in the United States.

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. is shifting to renewable energy in its headquarters and distribution centers.

Lowe’s Cos. reported fiscal fourth-quarter profit and sales that beat expectations as spending on home projects continues to surge amid the pandemic.

Retail sales in the U.S. this year are expected to total more than $4.33 trillion as more individuals receive the COVID vaccine and the economy reopens. 

Belk filed for bankruptcy protection with a lender-supported reorganization plan that cut its debt load by about $450 million.

Gelson’s Markets, which will celebrate its 70th anniversary this July, is being sold to a Japanese company looking to expand its fledgling U.S. footprint.

Fry’s Electronics has called it quits after being in business for nearly 36 years.

TJX Cos. reported fourth-quarter earnings and sales that missed expectations as its sales took a big hit from store closures around the world. 

Gap Inc. is investing in a new fulfillment center as it looks to double its digital sales during the next couple of years.

Macy’s Inc. ended a year of “unprecedented disruption” on a very upbeat note, topping Street estimates and reporting quarterly sales improvements across all three of its brands.

The Home Depot Inc. reported fourth-quarter profit and sales that easily topped Street expectations — including its third straight quarter of 25% comps — as consumers continued to invest heavily in their homes amid the pandemic.

The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. has agreed to buy a majority stake in indie beauty brand Deciem Beauty Brand Group Inc.

Heyday plans to ramp up its brick-and-mortar expansion via franchising.

Consumer confidence rose in February amid the vaccine push and as Americans grew more optimistic about the economy — and travel. 

Increased demand and expanded capacity fueled growth for grocery delivery and pickup in January.

As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more readily available, a majority of retailers will not mandate employees be inoculated.

Kohl’s Corp. is pushing back against a group of activist investors who think the retailer is not moving quick enough to address “stagnant sales” and “declining gross margins” — issues that it said predate the pandemic.

The TJX Cos. portfolio had an exceptional end to 2020 and a very strong start in 2021.

Walgreens Boots Alliance has administered more than 3 million COVID-19 vaccinations across long-term care facilities and other identified vulnerable populations. And now its in-store efforts are ramping up.

Six days. That’s how long it took to build the new Starbucks in Abbotsford, British Columbia (Canada). 

A shopping center in Miami’s West Little Havana neighborhood is being redeveloped into a mixed-use project that will include residential and office space along with retail and restaurants.

McDonald's Corp. will tie 15% of executive bonuses to meeting diversity and inclusion targets and has pledged to put more women and minorities into senior management roles.

Solstice Marketing Concepts has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Ulta Beauty will open its second store in the Big Apple in one of the city’s most prominent retail corridors. 

Walmart Inc. reported fourth-quarter earnings that fell short of expectations amid COVID-related costs and ongoing investments in e-commerce and cautioned that it expects sales to be moderate this year.

Retailers who are not able to fulfill online orders for in-store pickup quickly risk losing customers.

Chicken Salad Chick is growing its footprint in Indiana.

Foot Locker is increasing its capital expenditures for 2021 to a pre-COVID level.

Meijer is solidifying its commitment to reducing in-store food waste.

The Giant Company is expanding its portfolio in the City of Brotherly Love.

Old Spice boat

Old Spice is updating and expanding the standard barbershop experience with its first brick-and-mortar location. The 80-years-plus men’s grooming brand from P&G is opening a storefront that will serve as a barbershop, retail store, conte

Century 21 storefront

Century 21 plans to relaunch in summer — outside of the United States.

buy button with shopping cart

For the first time anywhere, a majority of retail sales for an entire country will happen online.

Tractor Supply

Tractor Supply Company is expanding its footprint in the Midwest through an acquisition.


Retail spending rose well ahead of expectations in January, boosted by a new round of stimulus checks.

Sam's Club executives

Sam’s Club is rolling out an in-house developed, automated health screening kiosk designed to enable a safer, quicker and more reliable COVID-19 screening procedure for employees to its nearly 600  clubs nationwide.  The contactless kio

grocery cart

Shopping and eating behaviors dramatically changed last year, and many shoppers plan to continue at least some of their new habits post-COVID-19.

Adidas is parting ways with Reebok.

Walmart and other retailers are once again temporarily shuttering stores — this time because of the weather.

CVS Health Corp. reported stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and revenues amid a rise in pharmacy sales and forecast a strong year ahead. 

Target Corp. is making a number of changes across its executive leadership team.

Läderach – chocolatier suisse is expanding its fledgling U.S. footprint. 

Sheetz will leverage a state-of-the-art energy intelligence platform to manage its energy spend.

Joann is leveraging the surge in arts-and-crafts amid the pandemic to file to go public.

Walmart Inc. has finalized the acquisition of its U.K. supermarket chain. 

U.S. consumer sentiment regarding expectations for the next six months fell to a six-month low in February as Americans — particularly lower-incomer consumers — grew more pessimistic about their financial outlook. 

Nordstrom's rotating New [email protected] in-store pop-up program is celebrating Black History Month by putting a spotlight on Black fashion.

Five Below isn’t letting the pandemic stop its national expansion.

Buc-ee’s continues to expand outside its home state. 

Retail sales in 2021 will increase to a record $4.26 trillion, up 8.1% year-over-year, which is the highest this century.

VF Corp. is implementing new programs and actions to advance racial equity in the company — and beyond.

Captain D’s is looking to expand its footprint via a new format.

GNC has made two key appointments to its leadership team. 

Nike has expanded its small-format Nike Live retail concept to its birthplace of Eugene, Ore.

Under Armour reported better-than-expected results for its fourth quarter amid strong online and expense management. 

Aldi is expanding its footprint and adding a new regional headquarters to support its ongoing expansion.

Target Corp. is going the extra mile to encourage its employees to get vaccinated for COVID-19.

Victoria’s Secret is facing a new rival with a fast-growing following and strong celebrity ties.

PVH Corp. has added a new role to its leadership team. 

Dick’s Sporting Goods is expanding its warehouse store format.

Target Corp. is showing highlights of its soon-to-launch limited-edition collection of home goods and lifestyle items with Levi Strass & Co. 

HMSHost and Starbucks are working to enhance the coffee experience for travelers.

Uber and Walgreens have joined forces to expand access to COVID-19 vaccines for people who have a car or a nearby pharmacy.

A big change coming out of the pandemic will be the shift from urbanization to suburban growth.

Chicken Salad Chick is moving its corporate headquarters out of Alabama.

Chain Store Age will bring together top retailers and suppliers involved in store/planning, construction and facilities management at the SPECS Spring Social, an interactive virtual event scheduled for March 24-25.

Handy has added another company to its growing roster of retail partners.

Two Northeast independent supermarket chains are combining forces.

The next six months should set new records for the nation’s largest retailer container ports as retailers import merchandise at a fast pace.

Kohl’s Corp. is making a major addition to its active and outdoor apparel assortment.

The Kroger Co. has joined the growing list of grocery retailers offering incentives for employees to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Belk has released its plans for its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing and reorganization.

Target Corp. has notched its tenth billion dollar private brand and this one is only a year old.

Men’s Wearhouse is moving forward with a new store design that offers shoppers an omnichannel experience in a physical environment.

The coffee chain that was supposed to give Starbucks Corp. a run for its money in China has filed for bankruptcy protection.

The National Retail Federation is calling on Congress to reject recently introduced legislation that it said would infringe on both employee and employer rights.

Simon Property Group is sounding the alarm over Sycamore’s latest retail venture.

Weis Markets is celebrating the opening of its newest location, in Martinsburg, W.V.

Kohl's Corp. reported better-than-expected earnings and strong digital sales in a preliminary look at its fourth-quarter performance.

Chain Store Age spoke with Giancarlo Lanzano, VP of business development at Pine Ridge Construction Management, about how the firm serves its clients and uses technology to their benefit, along with COVID-19 safety concerns.

Dick’s Sporting Goods is giving its employees plenty of time to make plans for Thanksgiving Day.

Tapestry Inc. reported second-quarter earnings and sales that beat estimates as its turnaround plan continues to gain momentum.

Publix Super Markets has opened the eighth location of its GreenWise Market specialty natural and organic foods banner.

A 20-year veteran of L Brands is retiring but will remain long enough to see the company separate its two brands — Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works — by this summer.

Chain Store Age will celebrate 17 leading female tech executives at its Top Women in Retail Technology awards ceremony, a live virtual event on Thursday, March 4, 2021, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. (EST).

The new year kicked off with retail gains across nearly all sectors and all 50 U.S. states.

Nordstrom expects its revenue to grow more than 25% in 2021, with digital claiming approximately 50% of total sales.

Express has regained compliance with the NYSE listing standards.

Walmart is on the list of a handful of retailers that will be administering COVID-19 vaccines in their pharmacies through a federal program.

Amazon capped off 2020 by delivering its largest quarterly revenue to date — news that was somewhat overshadowed by the announcement that founder Jeff Bezos will step down as CEO during the third quarter.  

At Home Group has opened its first new stores of the year.

GameStop is beefing up its digital ranks.

Casper Sleep is expanding its executive team

Jeff Bezos is stepping down from the helm of the company he founded in 1994. 

On the heels of a record 2020, PGS Tour Superstore expects to reach an important store milestone this year. 

CVS Health is gearing up to administer COVID-19 vaccinations in its pharmacies to eligible populations.

The Home Depot has opened a massive distribution center in Dallas to fulfill online orders and store orders.

Record holiday season retail sales during the last two months of 2020 reflected the recovering economy but also got a boost from consumer emotions after a stressful year.

Chicken Salad Chick is focusing on growth.

Ulta Beauty unveiled a $25 million diversity and inclusion initiative and brought on a popular celebrity activist and entrepreneur to serve as its diversity and inclusion advisor. 

Retail veteran Stuart Haselden has found a new home.

The Vitamin Shoppe is doing a bit of reorganizing.

Walmart and Walmart Foundation announced grants to 16 different nonprofit organizations that are tackling racial inequities in a variety of different ways.

Tom Nolan

Kendra Scott has its first new CEO since it was founded its 2002.

JD Sports, the owner of The Finish Line, continues to expand its U.S. retail portfolio.

Church’s Chicken has ambitious goals for 2021 and beyond.

The Home Depot is partnering with Allstate to launch an extended protection plan that will provide customers with expanded benefits and faster repair service. 

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