WAL-MART’S SOUTH KOREA SALE: Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is selling its South Korean retail business to Shinsegae Co. for $882 million, the retailer said Monday. Shinsegae, which operates 79 E-Mart hypermarkets in South Korea, will convert the 16 Wal-Mart Korea stores to the E-Mart nameplate. “As we continue to focus our efforts where we can have the greatest impact on our growth strategy, it became increasingly clear that in South Korea’s current environment it would be difficult for us to reach the scale we desired,” said Mike Duke, vice chairman of Wal-Mart Stores, in a statement. Although Wal-Mart is selling its Korean store operation, it will continue to operate its global procurement sourcing office in Seoul. Many of Wal-Mart’s stores in the U.S. and abroad carry goods manufactured in South Korea. Wal-Mart operates more than 2,600 stores in 15 markets outside the U.S., according to the company. Sales in its international division were $63 billion in the retailer’s most recent fiscal year, an 11 percent gain over the prior year. The retailer said it plans on opening between 220 and 230 stores outside the U.S. this year.

MOSSIMO POSTS LOSS: Mossimo posted a first-quarter net loss of $1.2 million, or 7 cents a diluted share, compared to earnings of $1.8 million, or 12 cents a diluted share, in the same period last year as sales dropped 43.7 percent to $4.9 million from $8.7 million. The company reported an operating loss of $2.1 million compared to operating earnings of $3.1 million during the previous year’s quarter. The company said it paid a non-recurring, $6 million charge to Target Corp. during the quarter to amend and restate its license agreement with the retailer. “We were pleased with the pace of our business during the quarter, as we registered meaningful gains in both our men’s and women’s business at Target,” said Edwin Lewis, Mossimo’s president and co-chief executive officer.

This story first appeared in the May 23, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.