LEVY, KERSON GROWS: Levy, Kerson & Associates, a leading executive search firm, has added three search professionals: David M. Diamond, Tricia Logan and Amy Zerman.
Robert Kerson, chairman of Levy, Kerson, said, “With David’s experience in retail, Tricia’s in retail and manufacturing and Amy’s in all aspects of research, these professionals, coupled with our existing team, will provide our client companies with very strong recruiting skills within our industry.”
Diamond has nine years of experience in retailing. He most recently was a Lord & Taylor buyer for men’s wear and earlier was the retailer’s buyer for Liz Claiborne Collection and Country Classics. Before that he was with Woodward & Lothrop and May Department Stores.
Logan was director of executive search at Coach. Prior to that, she was director of executive recruiting, creative divisions, at The Gap and a marketing manager at American Express. She began her career in the training program of R.H. Macy.
Amy Zerman was manager of New York research for Russell Reynolds, another international executive search firm. She supervised a staff of 10 researchers serving a variety of industries.
At Levy, Kerson, she will head up the research division.
CALDOR CLOSINGS: Following a post-holiday review, Caldor Corp. said it will close four money-losing stores by mid-May.
The stores are on Fordham Road in the Bronx; Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn; East Main Street in Westfield, Mass., and Diamond Hill Road in Woonsocket, R.I. The closings are subject to bankruptcy court approval.
In another development, the bankrupt Caldor said in court papers that it is seeking a six-month extension of its exclusive right to file a plan of reorganization. The Norwalk, Conn.-based chain’s exclusivity period is set to expire on Feb. 28.
A total of 850 people, or 3.7 percent of Caldor’s work force, work at the stores. Officials of the 161-unit chain said they hope to transfer some employees to other locations but had not yet determined how many would be given new posts.
S&P RATES KMART: Despite plans to take an after-tax charge of about $375 million in its 1996 results to discontinue its Builders Square home improvement chain, Standard & Poor’s affirmed its ratings on two securities issues, Kmart Corp. and Kmart Financing I. The ranking affects $7.34 billion in debt.
S&P noted its ratings outlook is negative but added, “The strategies being implemented by management will continue to improve operations, and demonstration of a sustainable return to profitability is likely to result in an outlook revision to stable within the next several quarters.”
The ratings affirmed include Kmart Corp.’s senior secured debt at BB-minus, senior unsecured debt at B-plus, bank loan rating at BB-plus, and corporate credit rating at BB. Kmart Financing I has a preferred stock rating at B-plus and a corporate credit rating of BB.
A deal proposed Feb. 3 that would combine Builders Square with Waban’s HomeBase chain would make Kmart a minority investor in the new firm. S&P said the deal would bring Kmart “substantial” tax benefits and eliminate a “meaningful diversion of management’s time.”
FAMILY MATTER: Family Dollar Stores, the Matthews, N.C.-based discounter, has named R. James Kelly to the new post of vice chairman and chief financial and administrative officer. Kelly, 49, had been a partner at Price Waterhouse, Family Dollar’s independent accountants.