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Dollar General announces changes to board

BY Michael Johnsen

GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. — Dollar General Corporation on Wednesday announced the resignations of Raj Agrawal and Adrian Jones as members of its board of directors, effective Dec. 5, 2013. Agrawal, a member of KKR, and Jones, a managing director at Goldman Sachs, have served as directors of Dollar General since 2007.

The entity controlled by KKR and Goldman Sachs, which purchased the company in 2007, now owns less than 2% of the company’s outstanding common stock. Based on this reduced level of ownership, KKR and Goldman Sachs have determined to reduce or eliminate, as applicable, their representation on the company’s board of directors. Mike Calbert, a member of KKR, will continue to serve as the lead director.

"Raj and Adrian have made substantial contributions to the success of Dollar General," stated Rick Dreiling, Dollar General chairman and CEO. "Their judgment and financial acumen have benefited both Dollar General employees and shareholders, and I appreciate their support over the years. On behalf of the entire board of directors, I thank them for their service to Dollar General."

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Coca-Cola hosts ceremony to honor veterans, U.S. military members

BY Ryan Chavis

ATLANTA — As part of a week-long observance of Veteran’s Day, Coca-Cola will host a ceremony to honor the men and women who have served the country, which includes more than 3,000 veterans employed by the company.

On Thursday, Retired First Class Sergeant Michael Schiltz will provide a keynote address where he will share his story of courage in the aftermath of an accident during a military campagin in Iraq. The 82nd Airborne Division "All-American" Chorus also will be on hand to pay tribute.

“This event provides the opportunity to recognize co-workers who have served or are serving in the military,” Steve Cahillane, president of Coca-Cola Americas, said. “On this special day, we also remember the families of those serving, for their sacrifices are often deep and long as they wait patiently for the safe return of their loved ones.”

On Nov. 13, associates at Coca-Cola helped stuff more than 10,000 care packages for the USO, which will be distributed to help boost the morale of troops around the world. The packages include items like batteries, Odwalla bars and personal thank-you letters from Coca-Cola associates.

“The Coca-Cola Company has a proud history of standing behind America’s men and women in uniform, which dates back more than 70 years,” Cahillane added. “We continue that tradition today by partnering with organizations like the USO, bringing veterans into the Coca-Cola workforce and refreshing the members of the extended U.S. military family millions of times around the world each day.”

 

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Ahold’s U.S. sales up slightly as global sales fall

BY Alaric DeArment

ZAANDAM, Netherlands — Royal Ahold had sales of $9.96 billion in third quarter 2013, compared with $10.2 billion during the same period last year, the Dutch supermarket operator said Thursday.

The results announced Thursday marked a 3.1% decrease in sales, though sales increased by 0.6% when measured by percentage change in constant exchange rates. Sales of the retailing company’s U.S. division were $5.9 billion, a 0.2% increase over third quarter 2012, while same-store sales increased by 0.1%, or 0.6% when excluding the effect of changing gas prices. The U.S. division includes the Stop & Shop, Giant Food of Landover, Md., and Giant Food Stores of Carlisle, Pa., supermarket chains and the online grocer Peapod.

Sales in the Netherlands increased by 1.4%, while sales elsewhere in Europe were down by 4%. Ahold CEO Dick Boer cited weak consumer sentiment in the Netherlands as a factor in the company’s lackluster European sales.

"In the United States, we continue to operate in a very competitive environment with low inflation," Boer said. "With limited sales growth, we gained market share in the supermarket segment and maintained our share in the all-outlet market. We were able to maintain a solid underlying operating margin, supported by continuous cost-savings."

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