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Taro appoints new chairman, CEO

BY Alaric DeArment

HAWTHORNE, N.Y. — Taro Pharmaceutical Industries has appointed Dilip Shanghvi as chairman, the Israeli generic drug maker said Thursday.

Taro said James Kedrowski would retire as interim CEO effective Aug. 1, to be replaced by Kalyanasundaram "Kal" Subramanian. Kedrowski will continue to serve as a member of the drug maker’s board. Sundaram relinquished his position as chairman to comply with Israeli laws that prohibit a person from simultaneously holding the positions of chairman and CEO; he had served as chairman since April 2012.

"I am looking forward to moving on to semi-retirement and having the opportunity to spend more time with my family," Kedrowski said. "Yet, I am very pleased with our team’s efforts to execute our plans and deliver the improvements in performance Taro has captured over the past three years."

 

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Supervalu stock rises on better-than-expected results

BY Michael Johnsen

MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu on Thursday reported first quarter fiscal 2014 net sales of $5.2 billion, down 1.5%, and net earnings of $85 million, or $0.34 per diluted share. The decrease in net sales primarily reflects a decline in identical store sales of negative 3% percent for retail food and negative 1.9% for Save-A-Lot. Identical store sales for corporately operated stores within the Save-A-Lot network were negative 1.2%.

“Our first quarter was highlighted by a renewed focus on driving sales and cash in all segments of our business and I’m pleased with the progress we made, especially the sequential improvement in sales trends from the fourth quarter of fiscal 2013 in each of our business segments,” stated Sam Duncan, Supervalu president and CEO. “We have a good foundation, strong leadership team, improved debt maturity profile and achievable goals across each operating segment.”

Specifically across its retail food operations, which includes pharmacy, Supervalu posted net sales of $1.4 billion, down 2.9%, primarily reflecting that same-store sales decline of 3%. 

But there is still a lot of work to do, Duncan acknowledged, as Supervalu focuses on turning identical sales positive. To that end, Supervalu has started revamping its center store, eliminating aisle stands for less clutter and improving product adjacencies. "Our focus remains on generating positive ID sales," Duncan told analysts Thursday morning. "We will make the necessary investment to accomplish this goal."

And right now, that investment is happening across merchandising improvements vs. a primary focus on improving competitive pricing. "When it comes to talking about pricing vs. merchandising opportunities … the opportunities in merchandising, there were so many of them [that] they far outweighed [the number of] opportunities in pricing."

Shares of Supervalu were selling more than $1.15 higher at $7/92 per share in mid-morning trading. Supervalu reported better-than-expected improvements in sales, prompting many investors who had shorted the stock to cover their positions, according to a report in Reuters

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Caress teams up with La La Anthony to celebrate launch of new body wash

BY Antoinette Alexander

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J. — Unilever’s Caress is celebrating the launch of its new Caress Tempting Whisper Fine Fragrance Elixir body wash by teaming up with La La Anthony, the star of “La La’s Full Court Life.”

Anthony is joining the Caress Fabulistas — beauty and style experts known for flaunting what is fabulous — to show women nationwide how fragrance can inspire them to live fabulously every day. They are sharing top fashion and beauty trends, inspired by fragrance.

Anthony joins fellow Caress Fabulista and YouTube beauty guru, Sonia Castaneda, who is known for her how-to beauty videos. The Fabulistas will post weekly tips and videos with hot new beauty trends and the latest in fashion on the Caress Facebook page all year long. In addition, fans can enter daily for a chance to win fashion and beauty prizes.

The new Caress Tempting Whisper Fine Fragrance Elixir body wash features floral notes of white peony, enhanced with fruity notes of red plum.


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