Family Dollar getting executive suite in place before new store, expanded assortment push

Chief merchant named

MATTHEWS, N.C. — Family Dollar Stores on Monday named Paul White to the position of EVP and chief merchandising officer. White will report to Mike Bloom, president and COO.

“Through Paul’s leadership and strategic vision, Family Dollar has created a compelling mix of discretionary merchandise, which has led to a more fun place to shop for our customers,” Bloom said. “Paul’s promotion will help us continue to broaden our appeal and deliver greater value to our customers.”

To augment an ambitious new-store growth and remodel commitment, Family Dollar is looking to increase comps sale performance through the broader assortment that White now will be helping to manage.

"Our objective is to drive traffic with an expanded selection of consumables, while also driving a larger basket with more impulse purchases and greater in-store excitement," Howard Levine, Family Dollar executive chairman and CEO, told analysts during a September conference call. "In fiscal 2012, we will continue to focus on driving greater trips with a strong focus on food and health-and-beauty aids," he added, "and look to drive baskets by being more seasonably relevant and emphasizing a more coordinated vision across discretionary categories."

Family Dollar is gearing for significant new-store growth in the coming years, targeting square footage growth of between 5% and 7% by fiscal 2012. "This year, we plan to open 450 to 500 new stores, including our first stores in California, which we expect to open before Christmas," Levine said during the September call.

White joined Family Dollar in 2011 as SVP apparel, home and seasonal. Before joining the company, he served as the past president, CEO and director of Goody’s, a privately held family apparel retailer, where he refocused the merchandising and marketing strategies on the core customer while leading that company’s exit from bankruptcy.

Other retail experience includes senior merchandising leadership roles at Shopko and The May Department Stores Co.

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