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Big things come in small packages at Target

BY Allison Cerra

MINNEAPOLIS — Target reportedly is scaling back with a new small urban format.

Announced on Friday at Target Field in Minneapolis, the big-box retailer said it will develop stores that will be 60,000 sq. ft. to 100,000 sq. ft., compared with its typical 125,000-sq.-ft. to 180,000-sq.-ft. size.

The first smaller-scale store is slated to open in Seattle in 2012, followed by several other cities.

"While we will continue to build full size Target stores in these areas when it makes sense to do so, we also believe that there is a compelling opportunity to open stores in smaller spaces with reduced optimized assortments when larger sites simply aren’t available," Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel told analysts during a conference call back in January. "To accommodate these smaller spaces, we will offer an edited assortment that focuses on the highest volume categories and items based on the unique needs of guests in urban settings. As part of this effort, we currently have plans to test a new assortment approach in three existing Target stores across the country. In this test, we’ll offer an assortment with about 50% fewer SKUs than are currently available in these stores," he added.

Target recently opened an urban store in New York’s East Harlem, and also has urban stores in Minneapolis and Chicago.

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Giant Eagle awarded for green efforts

BY Allison Cerra

PITTSBURGH Giant Eagle has received four awards from the Environmental Protection Agency for its eco-friendly practices and sustainability efforts, the supermarket retailer said.

Giant Eagle was the recipient of the EPA Montreal Protocol award, the GreenChill environmental award, the GreenChill building certification and the EPA Smartway transport partnership perfect performance score.

“Our multiple partnerships with the EPA are a significant piece of our overall sustainability strategy, which also includes our energy management efforts and recycling initiatives,” said Shelly Sponholz, Giant Eagle SVP real estate and development. “We truly believe that our environmental commitment is a vital part to the success of both our communities and our business, as so many of the sustainable projects we undertake produce tangible benefits to each.”

Giant Eagle operates stores throughout western Pennsylvania, Ohio, north central West Virginia and Maryland.

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Retailers urge Congress to reject Chinese currency legislation

BY Alaric DeArment

ARLINGTON, Va. As members of Congress move to try and force China to revalue its currency, the renminbi yuan, retailers are weighing in on the issue.

The Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represents more than 200 retailers, manufacturers and suppliers, asked lawmakers Friday to reject legislation under consideration Friday morning by the House Ways and Means Committee that would pressure China on its currency by imposing tariffs on products imported from there.

 

Alarge share of consumer products sold in the United States are made in China, and in many cases are no longer made in the United States. Thus, placing tariffs on goods imported from China could force retailers to pass the costs onto consumers.

 

 

“Provoking tension with our trading partners doesn’t come without costs, and we should choose our battles carefully, especially given the great amount of uncertainty in markets at this time,” RILA VP international trade Stephanie Lester said. “It makes little sense to enact harmful policies that will spark a bilateral conflict over currency with one of our largest trading partners and fastest-growing markets for American exports, given almost stagnant economic growth.”

 

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