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Sears Holdings launches fulfillment service for merchants

BY Alaric DeArment

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. — Sears Holdings has launched a service that it said would offer a simple, cost-effective way for businesses to manage storage, picking, packing and shipping of customer orders from Sears Marketplace and other places a merchant sells products.

Fulfilled By Sears allows merchants to market and sell to members of the company’s Shop Your Way Rewards program. Sears said members of the program buy and spend more and recently exceeded 60% of Sears transactions and sales.

Sellers pay a small fulfillment fee per item and a commission for items sold on Sears.com, using the company’s network of warehouses, distribution centers and online order-fulfillment processes.

"Fulfilled By Sears is a game-changer for sellers of any size seeking a way to grow income and sales without increasing associated costs like storage, shipping and personnel," Sears Holdings EVP and president for marketing, online and financial services Imran Jooma said. "The introduction of solutions like Fulfilled By Sears and the double-digit sales growth last year of our integrated online business show how Sears Holdings is leveraging its leading integrated retailing assets to benefit not only our Shop Your Way Rewards members and customers, but also businesses who want to take advantage of this service."

Sears Marketplace is an online community for third-party merchants to sell products and reach customers on Sears.com, working with Sears to provide members of the loyalty program and customers with products such as fitness equipment, electronics, lawn and garden equipment, home goods and others.


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Zak releases dinnerware featuring latest Disney Jr. stars

BY Jason Owen

SPOKANE, Wash. — Zak Designs on Tuesday announced the latest product license for its line of dinnerware for kids.

Zak is releasing two lines of mealtime products featuring characters from two Disney Junior animated shows: "Jake and the Never Land Pirates" and "Doc McStuffins."

"Doc McStuffins" is a series featuring six-year-old Doc McStuffins who heals the toys that visit her backyard clinic. The show stresses the importance of empathy, taking care of those in need and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. "Jake and the Never Land Pirates" is a music-filled interactive treasure hunt following a crew of kid pirates through their Never Land adventures as they try to outwit the infamous Captain Hook and Mr. Smee.

Chracters from both shows are featured on a variety of Zak products including standard and divided plates as well as bowls, flatware and an 8 oz. juice tumbler. Both lines also include a 17 oz. lenticular tumbler with 3-D graphics and Zak’s new 11 oz. Loopity Loop tumbler with a wrap-around straw on the top so kids can watch the liquid flow through.


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Jean Coutu Group sells 72.5 million shares of Rite Aid stock

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — The Jean Coutu Group sold 72.5 million of its 178.4 million shares of Rite Aid stock, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday and company announcement Tuesday.

The Canadian retail pharmacy group said it sold the shares for $158.5 million and would record a gain of $49.7 million in its net profit during first quarter 2014. The sale brings Jean Coutu’s stake in Rite Aid down to 11.7%, the company said.

The Canadian retail pharmacy group previously announced in July 2012 the sale of 56 million of its 234.4 million Rite Aid shares for $83.6 million, or $1.51 per share, which at the time reduced its stake in the company to 19.85%. The Camp Hill, Pa.-based retail pharmacy chain’s stock was trading at $2.25 Tuesday afternoon, after opening at $2.25.

Rite Aid announced last Thursday that it had made a $118.1 million profit in fourth quarter 2013 and a $123.1 million profit for the fiscal year, sending the stock soaring from $1.98 Thursday morning to a high of $2.33 Friday.

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