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  • 6/13/2024

    Numerator: Consumer confidence held steady in May

    Young adult African American female consumer holding credit card and smartphone sitting on floor at home doing online banking transaction. E commerce virtual shopping, secure mobile banking concept.; Shutterstock ID 1979496134

    Forty-one percent of consumers are very or somewhat comfortable spending money on discretionary purchases.

    That’s according to the Numerator Consumer Sentiment Tracker for May, which captures more than 6,000 responses a month and provides a comprehensive monthly view of consumer confidence, spending & saving considerations and future financial outlook. 

    The May Consumer Confidence Score was 56.8 (-0.1 vs. April), which is an average of how consumers feel about the job market, their household finances, and their spending comfort levels.

    “Consumer confidence held steady in May, with consistent levels of comfort across the board,” Numerator said.

    The May Financial Outlook Score was 50.3 (-0.2), indicating that consumers feel neutral about their household finances. Thinking about one year from now, 24% think their finances will be better than they are now, 52% think they’ll be the same, and 23% think they’ll be worse. Black consumers and Gen Z consumers are the most optimistic about their financial situations. 

    Other findings from the May report are below.

    To save money, consumers are shopping for items on sale (45.5%), using coupons/discount codes (44.7%) and cooking at home (43.9%).

    With the warmer weather, consumers are looking to get out of the house or fix up the house. 30.3% plan to use spare cash to travel or go on vacation, and 22.8% plan to make home repairs/improvements. 

    Forty-percent of consumers think it’s very or somewhat easy to find employment in the current job market. Meanwhile, 27% think it’s somewhat or very difficult.

    Forty-eight percent of consumers say their household’s financial situation is currently good or very good (no change vs. April). 

    •Consumers with spare cash say they’re putting it in savings (38%) and paying down debts (34%).

  • 6/13/2024

    Retailers invited to join reveal of CSA Retail's Top Women Awards at virtual event

    CSA Retail's Top Women Awards

    Retailers are invited to meet some of the retail industry’s most accomplished female executives at Chain Store Age’s annual Retail’s Top Women Awards event. The 2024 honorees will be revealed at a virtual celebration on June 14, at 4:30 p.m. (EDT). Retailers can register for the event here.  (There is no charge.)

     The event will include plenty of time for virtual networking with the honorees and other retail attendees. Awards will be given out in five separate categories: technology, supply chain, store development/finance marketing, finance and marketing. In addition, several women will be honored as Women of the Year.

    Join Chain Store Age as it celebrates the achievements of top female retail executives from companies that include:

    •Blain’s Farm & Fleet;

    •Christian Dior;

    •Dollar General; 

    •Dollar Tree;

    •Gap;

    •Genesco

    •Lowe’s;

    •Lulu and Georgia;

    •Shell;

    •Specsaver;

    •Ulta Beauty;

    •Walgreens Boots Alliance; 

    •Yesway; and

      many more.

    For free registration, retailers can click here.

     

  • 6/12/2024

    Big V Property Group acquires Georgia open-air center

    Johns Creek Town Center

    Big V Property Group has acquired the Johns Creek Town Center in Suwanee, Ga., marking the firm's fifth community center in the state.

    Located approximately 30 miles from downtown Atlanta, the 303,297-sq.-ft. open-air center is anchored by major retailers including HomeGoods, Sprouts, Kohl’s, Ulta Beauty, Market by Macy’s, and PetSmart. The transaction marks the second major acquisition made by Big V Property Group and their partner, Equity Street Capital, in 2024, following their purchase of Merchants’ Square in Carmel, Indiana in February. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

    “Greater Atlanta is one of the most dynamic markets in America, and we’re thrilled to complement our expansion efforts in the region with the addition of Johns Creek,” said Jeff Rosenberg, CEO of Big V Property Group.

    The greater Atlanta region is home to more than six million residents, making it the eighth-largest market in the United States.

    Headquarted in Charlotte, N.C., Big V Property Group owns and operates over 50 neighborhood and community shopping centers totaling over 9.5 million sq. ft., primarily located in the South.

  • 6/11/2024

    Done Deal: Tropical Smoothie Cafe acquired; former Dunkin' CEO named chairman

    Tropical Smoothie Café

    Private equity funds managed by Blackstone have completed the acquisition of Tropical Smoothie Cafe from Levine Leichtman Capital Partners. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but the Wall Street Journal reported in May that the deal valued the fast-casual chain at about $2 billion.

    As part of the transaction, Nigel Travis, former CEO of Dunkin’ Brands, will serve as chairman for Tropical Smoothie Cafe.

    Headquartered in Atlanta, Tropical Smoothie is a leading franchisor of fast-casual restaurants. It has more than 1,400 locations across 44 states. 

    “With Blackstone’s capital and resources, we look forward to accelerating the company’s continued expansion across the country and supporting innovation to further capitalize on the brand’s unique positioning,” said Peter Wallace, a senior managing director, and Michael Staub, a managing director, in Blackstone’s private equity business.

    LLCP bought Tropical Smoothie Cafe, which was founded in 1997, in September 2020. At the time, the chain had more than 870 locations. The company opened more than 175 new locations in 2023, 70% of which were opened by existing franchisees.

    “By partnering with Blackstone, Tropical Smoothie Cafe will be able to Inspire Better in more communities nationwide alongside our dedicated franchisees,” said Charles Watson, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Cafe. “2024 will be another big year in our growth trajectory, as we focus on operational excellence, menu innovation, and the digital guest experience.”

    Barclays served as financial advisor and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP served as legal counsel to Blackstone. Baird served as the lead financial advisor, with support from North Point and BofA Securities, and Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal counsel to Tropical Smoothie Cafe in connection with the sale.

  • 6/11/2024

    Hackensack Commons reaches full occupancy

    New Home Kitchen & Bath

    Urban Edge Properties has announced that New Home Kitchen & Bath is taking the last vacant space at its Hackensack Commons center in Hackensack, N.J., bringing the property to full occupancy.

    The new 2,215-sq.-ft. store offers remodeling services for kitchen and bathrooms, providing free job site measurements, 3D designs, and quotes. The retailer also carries a variety of ready-to-order and custom-made cabinets with different price ranges.

    “Adding this new home improvement store solidifies Hackensack Commons as a go-to resource for essential needs in the area,” said Gabby Semet, director of leasing for Urban Edge. “We pride ourselves on adding new concepts to add to the center that diversify our offerings, while complementing the existing tenancy.”

    Also new in the center is The Moon Korean BBQ & Hot Pot restaurant which offers visitors an authentic Korean dining experience. Another tenant, Petco recently added Vetco Total Cares veterinary services to this location.

    Hackensack Commons’ roster of tenants also includes The Home Depot, 99 Ranch Market, and Chipotle.

    Urban Edge owns 76 properties totaling 17.4 million sq. ft. of gross leasable area.

  • 6/10/2024

    McDonald's announces supply chain leadership change

    McDonald's

    One of McDonald’s C-suite leaders is planning to retire later this year, and a successor has been named.

    Bob Stewart, senior VP and chief supply chain officer, North America, will retire, effective as of October 1, 2024. The fast-food hamburger giant has appointed Cesar Piña as his successor, who currently serves as corporate VP of global strategic sourcing for food sitting on the Global Supply Chain Leadership Team.

    Piña will assume the new role this fall. He has been with McDonald’s for nearly 10 years and has held multiple supply chain-related positions. Before joining the restaurant chain, he held positions with McClement Management Group and General Mills.

    “Cesar has made significant contributions across his 10-year McDonald’s career to drive meaningful change to our global supply chain and the system at large, and there is no doubt that he is the right leader to carry forward McDonald’s priorities,” said Marion Gross, executive VP and global chief supply chain officer at McDonald’s. “His extensive industry experience in driving business results matched with his strong learning aptitude and passion for advancing a culture of collaboration makes him uniquely suited to shepherd the North America Supply Chain team into the future.”

    Based in Chicago, McDonald's USA LLC operates approximately 13,500 U.S. restaurants, 95% of which are owned and operated by independent business owners.

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