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News Briefs

  • 10/20/2023

    REI observing company holiday on Thanksgiving, Black Friday

    REI Opt Outside

    REI Co-op is once again closing its stores on one of the busiest shopping day of the year.

    In 2022, the specialty outdoor retailer made its “Opt Outside” initiative permanent for all employees. Every Black Friday (this year taking place on Nov. 24), REI will close its stores, distribution centers, activity centers, call centers and headquarters, and pay its more than 16,000 employees, urging them to enjoy time outside.

    REI is also closing for Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 23). While customers can still place an order on, order processing and fulfillment will not begin until Saturday, Nov. 25. REI initially launched its Opt Outside initiative in 2015, and has closed down for Black Friday every year since.

    "Eight years ago, we asked everyone to join us in ditching the chaos and mass consumerism of Black Friday and instead spend the day outside. But for millions of people living in America, the invitation to Opt Outside isn't so simple," said REI CEO Eric Artz. "We're committed to changing that."

    Headquartered near Seattle, Wash., REI is the largest U.S. consumer co-op, with 23 million members. REI has 185 locations in 42 states and the District of Columbia.

  • 10/20/2023

    Walgreens in settlement with shareholders over failed Rite Aid merger

    Walgreens store

    Walgreens Boots Alliance has reached a settlement in a class action lawsuit filed by investors of Rite Aid.

    The pharmacy and health care services giant agreed to pay $192.5 million to resolve the suit, which was filed by Rite Aid investors who accused Walgreens of misleading them about scrutiny of the two companies’ proposed merger, reported Reuters. The settlement deal is subject to approval by a district judge in Pennsylvania.

    The lawsuit claimed that Walgreens downplayed antitrust regulatory concerns about the merger, which was first announced in 2015 and came under intense scrutiny by regulators. Walgreens scrapped the plan in June 2017 after failing to win approval from the Federal Trade Commission.

    The settlement  comes days after Rite Aid filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

  • 10/20/2023

    Claire's introduces new loyalty program


    Fashion brand and jewelry destination Claire’s has announced the relaunch of its loyalty program under a new name and brand identity. 

    Now known as C.CLUB, the program provides increased benefits and faster ways to earn rewards. To celebrate the relaunch, Claire’s is giving away one billion reward points to both new and existing members who join the program.

     Once enrolled, C.CLUB loyalty members, referred to as "Friends,” will have access to a number of benefits, including 50 points every time they make a purchase. With 100 points equaling a $5 reward, members will be rewarded after every two times they shop. 

    Members of the program will also be eligible to receive free earrings for a year when they get pierced in-store, exclusive birthday surprises, special discounts and free shipping as well as invitations to members-only events and early VIP access to new products and collection launches.

    C.CLUB members will be given additional ways to earn points, including the opportunity to level-up their rewards by becoming a "Bestie” for $100 per year. Additional perks for C.CLUB Besties include 50% more points on each purchase and free shipping with no minimum purchase required.

    In addition, for the first time, Claire's will offer the first 1,000 members who play and win the C.CLUB quest in its ShimmerVille metaverse environment on the immersive Roblox gaming platform a free pair of earrings, redeemable in Claire's stores.

    "With over 18 million members (and growing!), our loyalty program is one of the most important aspects of our brand," said Kristin Patrick, EVP and chief marketing officer of Claire's. "As we continue to turn our brand platform over to the voices of Gen Zalpha, we hope that allowing them to play an instrumental role in building C.CLUB will help inspire them with new possibilities."

  • 10/19/2023

    Amazon Fresh offers holiday meal for five – under $50

    Amazon Fresh

    Amazon Fresh wants shoppers to have a holiday meal that satisfies both the stomach and the wallet.

    In an email to Chain Store Age, an Amazon spokesperson said the company’s Amazon Fresh high-tech grocery stores aims to help customers feed a family of five for less than $50 with both everyday low prices on select staples and seasonal items and special holiday discount offers.

    During the month of November 2023, Amazon Fresh will sell frozen butterball turkeys for $0.49/lb. when customers spend $50 or more in-store and $0.99/lb. when they shop online. And starting Nov. 16, 2023, Hormel Cure 81 bone-in spiral half hams will cost $2.49/lb. both in-store and online.

    In addition, new Amazon Fresh shoppers who complete an online delivery order of $100 or more and use the code “Fresh50” at checkout receive free same-day delivery and $50 off. Amazon Prime members get a discount of 10% off on hundreds of items, including on holiday essentials like eggs, butter, sugar, cooking oil, meats, and produce, as well as free delivery on orders over $100 in the U.S.

    Competing grocery retailers including Walmart and Aldi are also offering discounts on holiday meals and ingredients.

    Amazon Fresh stores will be open Thanksgiving Day from 8 a.m. - 5p.m., and Amazon will continue to offer customers two-hour delivery windows for all orders (subject to availability).

    Whether you are having an intimate dinner with family, or inviting the neighborhood over for a feast, Amazon Fresh offers unbelievable value to keep holiday spending in check,” the spokesperson said.

  • 10/19/2023

    Macy’s unveils curated holiday gift hub

    Macy's Christmas Tree (Photo: Business Wire)

    Macy’s customers have a new digital destination designed to streamline their holiday shopping.

    The department store retailer is offering “Gifts We Love,” a curated list featuring beauty, home, toys, accessories and other gift categories. “Gifts We Love” is now available to shop on the Macy’s e-commerce site and mobile app, as well as at select Macy’s stores nationwide.

    Curated categories include product selections in the luxury, kitchen/cooking, self-care, cold weather accessories, and Macy’s gift cards. The retailer is also partnering with the Toys ‘R’ Us Geoffrey’ Hot Toy List for 2023 for its children’s category. In addition, Macy’s provides customized online product guides via its Gift Finder tool.

    “Macy’s is the ultimate gifting destination. Customers come to us for inspiration, trends and value on a wide range of stylish gifts for the entire family,” said Dana Avidan Cohn, director of editorial at Macy’s. “This year, we’ve curated a selection of products in our ‘Gifts We Love’ list featuring must-have brands, trends and in-demand items that everyone will love this holiday season.”

    Macy’s brings holidays to the metaverse

    As the fall progresses, Macy’s will incorporate the holiday season into mstylelab, its new shoppable metaverse environment. As a start, the current activation (a surreal virtual New York City experience) will shift to showcase the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

    Editor’s Note: Photo courtesy of Business Wire.

  • 10/18/2023

    Sterling Organization acquires Buckhead shopping center

    Marketplace at Buckhead

    Marketplace at Buckhead, a retail center located in the Buckhead neighborhood of Atlanta, Ga., has a new owner.

    The 102,864-square-foot shopping center, anchored by an 81,718-square-foot Kroger store, has been acquired by Sterling Organization from a seller represented by JLL Capital Markets. Formerly known as Cherokee Plaza, Marketplace on Buckhead was built in 1958 and underwent renovations in 1997 and 2013.

    Neither the seller nor the purchase price was not announced.

    According to JLL, the property, located along Peachtree Road, features a weighted average tenure of approximately 25 years, and 89% of the tenants are nationally recognized brands that include Kroger, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Willy’s Mexicana Grill, Salon Lofts and more. The property's historical occupancy has been 100% for over a decade.

    Median household income within one mile of Marketplace at Buckhead is $137,775.

    “Demand for high-quality retail centers remains exceptionally strong, especially for grocery-anchored opportunities,” said Jim Hamilton, senior managing director at JLL Retail Capital Markets. “Marketplace at Buckhead was one of the most highly sought-after retail centers that we’ve marketed this year due to the infill and irreplaceable location, high-income demographics and significant cash flow growth potential.”

    Buckhead offers residents a number of luxury shopping options, including Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza. Marketplace at Buckhead is located one mile away from both shopping malls, and four miles away from the midtown and downtown sections of Atlanta.

    Sterling Organization and its affiliates, own and manage more than 73 properties across the U.S. with more than 12 million square feet of primarily retail real estate, estimated to be worth over $2 billion in value.

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