BIG STAKES: Value City Department Stores Inc. shareholders last month ratified a $525 million refinancing deal that gives a group including Schottenstein Stores Corp. a 67.5 percent beneficial ownership stake in the discounter. As reported, the arrangement was entered into in June, but wasn’t ratified until last month’s annual meeting on Sept. 26. In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Tuesday, the retailer said it also repaid and ended previous financing agreements with Schottenstein. The group sold a 6 percent participating interest in the financing arrangement, which included the transfer of 88,644 warrants, to a third party earlier this month.
BURLINGTON MANAGEMENT SHIFTS: Douglas J. McGregor, the 61-year-old former mining executive who Burlington Industries Inc. hired out of retirement in 2000, is to step down as president and chief operating officer of the Greensboro, N.C.-based mill at the end of the year, according to a company statement. Peter Liu, who joined the company a year ago and heads its Hong Kong-based Burlington Worldwide operation, will take on responsibilities for all apparel fabrics sales, marketing and product development, and will report to chairman and chief executive officer George Henderson. The company is beginning a search for a candidate to fill the new post of executive vice president of North American operations, overseeing the company’s manufacturing plants.
SARA LEE SWEETENS: Enjoying the benefits of its reshaping program, such as increased sales of higher-margin goods and reduced operating costs, Sara Lee Corp. said first-quarter earnings would reach at least 35 cents a diluted share. This compares with the firm’s previous guidance of 27 to 29 cents a share. Sales from continuing operations are expected to be flat for the quarter with strength in intimate apparel, socks, meats and household products offset by weakness in the beverage, bakery, hosiery and direct-selling operations. For fiscal 2003, Sara Lee is now looking for diluted EPS of $1.54 to $1.60, up from previous estimates of $1.44 to $1.50.
KLOTZ TO BANANA: Leslie R. Klotz has been named senior director of public relations and communications for Banana Republic, reporting to Amy Schoening, executive vice president of marketing. Klotz, based in New York, handles all communication for stores, product, media relations, events, sponsorship and community programs. Most recently, she was senior vice president of executive development and communications for Polo Ralph Lauren, and prior to that was director of media relations and communications for the Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles.