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Harris Teeter reports sales gains of 5.8% for its fiscal 2012

BY Michael Johnsen

MATTHEWS, N.C. — Harris Teeter Supermarkets on Thursday posted sales of $4.5 billion for the 52 weeks ended Oct. 2, up 5.8%. Comparable store sales increased by 4% for the year 

“We are pleased with our results for fiscal 2012 and the completion of our purchase and sale transaction with Lowes Foods," stated Thomas Dickson, Harris Teeter chairman and CEO. "On a comparable store basis, we continue to experience increased unit sales compared to the prior year, and our store-brand penetration continues to improve. We believe these positive results are attributable to our continuing commitment to our customers to deliver outstanding values and excellent customer service.”

Over the course of fiscal 2012, Harris Teeter opened 13 stores, including six stores acquired from Lowes Foods, and closed eight stores. In addition, one store located in the Washington, D.C., market has been temporarily closed while the company repairs damage caused by flooding that occurred in the third quarter of fiscal 2012. 

Harris Teeter operated 208 stores as of the end of fiscal 2012, and retail square footage increased by 4.5% for the fiscal year. 

Capital expenditures for fiscal 2012 totaled $200 million and are expected to total approximately $235 million for fiscal 2013, the grocer reported. The fiscal 2013 capital plan includes 12 new stores and nine major remodels. In addition, the company anticipates re-opening the store in the Washington, D.C., market that was closed to repair damage caused by flooding. The fiscal 2013 store development program is expected to result in a 5.4% increase in retail square footage.

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Publix sets up Hurricane Sandy relief effort at the checkout

BY Michael Johnsen

LAKELAND, Fla. — Publix on Thursday established a program to offer its customers and associates a way to directly assist those areas in the Northeast affected by Hurricane Sandy. Customers may donate any amount by adding it to their grocery totals when checking out at Publix registers. Collected money will be channeled through the American Red Cross and designated specifically for Hurricane Sandy disaster relief efforts.

“Our customers and associates have trusted Publix to react and help those affected by tragic circumstances,” stated Maria Brous, director of media and community relations. “This disaster to the Northeast hits close to home, as we have many customers whom reside in our operating areas during the winter months.”

 

 

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Duracell offers power to New York, New Jersey following Sandy outages

BY Melissa Valliant

BETHEL, Conn. — Procter & Gamble battery brand Duracell is assisting with post-Sandy relief efforts by bringing a little power to, coincidentally, Battery Park in New York.

The company set up its Power Forward Community Center in the lower Manhattan park — offering New Yorkers charging stations for mobile phones and devices, as well as computers with Internet access — and sent its Rapid Responder four-by-four truck, introduced just this year, straight to the streets of New York and New Jersey. Both the power-relief center and the Rapid Responder truck — which Duracell calls its "PowerForward Fleet" — are offering battery samples to help people power their radios and flashlights, and the truck is expected to make multiple stops throughout the Hoboken, N.J., area.

"We’re sending the power-relief center to Lower Manhattan because it’s a high concentration of people and one of the hardest-hit," said Duracell spokesman Win Sakdinan. "But there are some areas in New York and New Jersey that can’t be reached with that, and the Rapid Responder is more agile because it’s just a four-by-four."

The Bethel, Conn.-based company, which also felt the effects of the superstore, had a plan for battery shortages in stores as well: Its Mobile Command Center responds to retailers in need of restocking. However, many of the local retailers had in enough batteries in stock to render this unnecessary.

"You prepare as much as you can, but demand from consumers can be unpredictable," Sakdinan said.

For updates on the Rapid Responder truck’s upcoming locations and scheduling, visit Facebook.com/Duracell or follow @Duracell on Twitter.

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