ROOM TO MOVE: Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plans to add about 50 new discount stores and 180 to 185 supercenters domestically in the next fiscal year, with relocations and expansions of existing stores accounting for 110 to 115 of the new supercenters. Across all its divisions, the firm next year will add a total of 46 million square feet of retail space, a 9 percent increase.
A FAMILY AFFAIR: Ronald Lauder Tuesday offered to sell five million shares, or 3.8 percent of his family’s total holdings, of The Estee Lauder Cos. Inc. The offering, made under a shelf registration filed in March, was priced at $31.40 a share and would leave the Lauder family with 53.7 percent of the firm’s common stock, representing about 90.9 percent of the common shareholders’ voting power. J.P. Morgan Securities is underwriting the deal for Lauder, who is chairman of Clinique Laboratories and Estee Lauder International.
BODY ON THE BLOCK: London-based The Body Shop International PLC has confirmed that it’s in preliminary discussions with a number of companies, including several British financial institutions and venture-capital firms, about a possible bid for the company. None of the companies were identified, but a Body Shop spokeswoman said further information would be made public when appropriate. Body Shop engaged in talks with the Mexican health products company Omnilife about an acquisition last summer, but they were aborted.
BID TO EXTEND BAN: A bill to extend by two years a moratorium on Internet access taxes and other user fees was introduced in the Senate Tuesday by Sens. John McCain (R., Ariz.), Ron Wyden (D., Ore.) and Patrick Leahy (D., Vt.). Retailers had aimed to tack a provision onto the moratorium, which is slated to expire Oct. 21, that would allow states to collect ‘Net sales taxes, but in light of the issue’s complexity and fallout from the terrorist attacks, that push has been shelved through yearend.
GLOBAL’s 25th: Global Sports did its 25th deal Tuesday, acquiring Boston- based City Sports, a client for which it will provide e-commerce services. The Web site Global will launch by yearend, at citysports.com, will target active, urban adults. CS has 10 stores, in Boston, New York and Philadelphia.