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Duck tape, Fiskars partner for new scissors

BY David Salazar

MADISON, Wis. — Duck duct tape is joining forces with Fiskars to create a new pair of scissors.

The Fiskars Duck Edition scissors are meant to easily cut through duct tape without accumulating sticky buildup, and are coated in a non-stick material. The scissors, which are currently being sold on Fiskars.com and in JoAnn Fabric stores, come in 5- and 8-in. sizes.

“Both Duck brand duct tape and Fiskars share a commitment to creating innovative products that help people express their creativity,” Jay Gillespie, Fiskars’ VP brand marketing, said. “This partnership is a perfect fit, and we’re looking forward to giving enthusiasts tools that make creating with Duck Tape easier than ever before.”

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Safeway announces settlement of certain actions in connection with proposed merger

BY Antoinette Alexander

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway has announced its entry into a memorandum of understanding to settle the consolidated class action pending in the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware filed on behalf of alleged Safeway stockholders against Safeway in connection with Safeway’s proposed merger with an affiliate of AB Acquisition LLC.

The memorandum of understanding provides for, among other things, (i) an amendment to the definitive merger agreement to adjust certain provisions of the Casa Ley contingent value rights agreement and the PDC contingent value rights agreement, each of which were previously attached as exhibits to the definitive merger agreement, (ii) an agreement by Safeway to terminate Safeway’s stockholder rights plan, commonly referred to as a "poison pill," effective June 19, and (iii) certain changes to the proxy statement filed in connection with the proposed merger, which changes will be captured in the definitive proxy statement that Safeway intends to file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

While Safeway has entered into the memorandum of understanding and an amendment to the definitive merger agreement and has accelerated the expiration date of the stockholder rights plan to June 19, the settlement will be subject to the approval of the Delaware Chancery Court. Safeway and the board of directors of Safeway believe the claims are entirely without merit, and in the event the settlement does not resolve them, intend to defend these actions.

The changes to the terms of the PDC CVR Agreement provide that, among other things, the holders of the contingent value rights under the PDC CVR Agreement would, instead of not receiving any value for any assets of Safeway’s shopping center portfolio that remain unsold at the end of the two year sale deadline period under the PDC CVR Agreement, be entitled to the fair market value of the unsold assets (net of certain expenses, fees and taxes).

The changes to the terms of the Casa Ley CVR Agreement, among other things, shorten the sale deadline period from four years to three years. In the event any of the equity interests of Casa Ley, S.A. de C.V., a Mexico-based food and general merchandise retailer, owned by Safeway remain unsold as of the sale deadline period, the determination of the fair market value that the holders of the contingent value rights under the Casa Ley CVR Agreement would be entitled to at the end of the sale deadline period would exclude any minority, liquidity or similar discount regarding such equity interests.

Originally scheduled to expire on Sept. 15, Safeway’s board has amended the rights plan to accelerate the expiration date to June 19, effectively terminating the plan and the rights issued under the plan as of that date. Accordingly, upon termination, Safeway will voluntarily delist the rights from The New York Stock Exchange. Safeway plans to file an application on Form 25 to notify the SEC of the withdrawal of the rights from listing on the NYSE, and expects the withdrawal to be effective on July 3. Following the withdrawal, the company will continue to file the same periodic reports and other information it currently files with the SEC, but the rights will no longer be listed or registered on an exchange or other quotation medium.

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Study: Most consumers desire ‘ultra-gentle’ skin care products

BY Antoinette Alexander

CHICAGO — Sometimes it’s not about what’s in your beauty products — but what isn’t. And this seems to be especially true of the skin care sector. According to Mintel’s Global New Products Database, thus far in 2014, sensitive skin claims represent 25% of total skin care claims, compared with 15% in 2009. What’s more, 71% of facial skincare users say they are interested in ultra-gentle products.

Sales trends between Jan. 1 and April 1 also reflect a move toward natural skin care. Mintel estimates that sales of sensitive/gentle skincare products are more than $202 million, with the majority of sales coming from the facial cleanser and facial moisturizer segments. Sensitive and gentle skincare products also are capturing a greater percentage of facial cleanser and moisturizer sales.

“While facial skin care products have typically highlighted the addition of ingredients such as vitamins and botanicals, the category appears to be moving toward highlighting what’s not in the formula — fragrance, dyes, etc.,” said Shannon Romanowski, senior beauty and personal care analyst. “This move toward gentle skin care is a reflection of consumers’ desire for performance, combined with increased concern and awareness regarding what is being put on their skin.”

Consumers seem to be big fans of the pared-down approach, as almost a quarter (24%) of facial skin care users say they look for products with natural, organic ingredients. Twenty-two percent seek out products that are free from certain ingredients, like parabens or fragrances, and 21% are interested in items that are designed specifically for sensitive skin.

“While future growth is expected to remain slow, there are opportunities for more customized and convenience-driven product options. Value-added products that enhance health and wellness, extend usage occasions or tap into the convenience-driven mindset of male and multicultural shoppers stand to gain,” Shannon said. “In addition, a consumer shift toward gentle skincare benefits also reflects an opportunity, especially among women and Black consumers.”

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