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Takeaway: Chip’s comments likely were directed at a Board that fired his choice CFO. TGT dividend hike very ill-timed – should have waited for CEO.

COMPANY NEWS

 

LULU - lululemon athletica inc. issues statement

(http://investor.lululemon.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=854202)

  • "The lululemon Board of Directors and management team have been consistently focused on enhancing shareholder value and will continue to take actions to achieve this objective. The Board's commitment to the value and reputation of the lululemon brand and the constant focus by the Board and management on the Company's mission and core values is critical to enhancing long-term shareholder value."
  • "The Board is overseeing lululemon's strategy to strengthen the Company's foundation, focus its product engine on innovation, and accelerate sustainable and controlled global expansion. By leveraging its design-led roots, strengthening its supply chain and providing an exceptional guest experience, we are confident that lululemon, under new CEO Laurent Potdevin's leadership, will provide guests with the high-quality, technical products they know and love and create value for shareholders."
  • "Contrary to Mr. Wilson's assertions, lululemon's Board members are aligned with the Company's core values and possess the necessary expertise to successfully lead lululemon forward."

Takeaway: Something caused Chip to fly off the handle - odds are it was the Board's decision to push Currie out the door. This is still very much Chip's management team and there's no doubt he hand picked Potdevin as the new CEO. The management team in place may be good enough for a company doing $1bil in revenues, but we question how it could manage a $4-$5 billion business. If this is the case and the Board is pushing for real change - then this is a name that we can get behind.

 

TGT - Target Corporation Declares Regular Quarterly Dividend

(http://investors.target.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=65828&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1939160&highlight=)

  • "The board of directors of Target Corporation has declared a quarterly dividend of 52 cents per common share. The dividend is payable September 10, 2014 to shareholders of record at the close of business August 20, 2014."

Takeaway: Not a huge surprise that TGT increased its dividend. For now the company's cash priorities are as follows: 1) invest in the business, 2) support the divided, and 3) fund share repo. But it's hard to get behind TGT's use of cash with a shadow executive committee in the C-Suite. When a new CEO is hired, he's going to have his own plan on how to fix the business and it will be expensive. And, its not like this company isn't levered. It would probably be more prudent for the company to tighten the purse strings in anticipation of big changes to the organization. No CEO who will be in spending mode will ever want to inherit a recently (and significantly) increased dividend. Not a prudent decision by the Board.

 

OTHER NEWS

TGT - Target Shareholders Back Board

(http://www.wwd.com/retail-news/mass-off-price/target-shareholders-back-board-7726168?module=hp-retail)

  • "Despite a call last month from advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services to oust seven of the company’s 10 directors, the full board was reelected at the company’s annual meeting in Dallas Wednesday. Shareholders also voted down a proposal requesting the board have an independent chairman and approved a proposal to revise compensation packages."

 

BEBE - bebe stores, inc. Announces CEO Transition

(http://investorrelations.bebe.com/press-release/other/bebe-stores-inc-announces-ceo-transition)

  • "Bebe stores, inc. today announced that Steve Birkhold has resigned as Chief Executive Officer of bebe stores, inc. effective today. Concurrently, the Board of Directors has appointed Jim Wiggett, currently Chief Executive Office of Jackson Hole Group, as Interim Chief Executive Officer of bebe. "
  • "Mr. Wiggett has been providing advisory services to the Company for the past five years. He joins the bebe team with close to 40 years of retail, merchandising, and business experience. Prior to founding the Jackson Hole Group, a strategic consulting group, Mr. Wiggett held a number of executive positions, with several high-profile companies, most recently Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH). As Executive Vice President at LVMH, Mr. Wiggett provided leadership to the 10 operating companies within the Select Distribution Group and consulting support to many of the non-retail organizations."

 

NKE, UA, ADS.DE - Sports Apparel Market Expects Uptick From World Cup

(http://www.wwd.com/menswear-news/sportswear/sports-apparel-market-expects-uptick-from-world-cup-7726361?module=hp-business)

 

  • "Much like the players on the pitch, Adidas, Nike and Puma will be flexing their marketing muscles and competing for excellence and visibility, each in their own way. 'Brazil is an $11 billion [sports apparel] market, the fourth largest in the world, following the U.S., China and Japan,' said Alexis Frick, a researcher with Euromonitor International, adding that over the past few years the country has experienced a growth rate of 14 percent, 'something developed countries can only dream of.' No surprise then that for global sports brands, Brazil, with an estimated population of 200 million, is a strategic battleground, 'and football presents the largest opportunity.'"

 

PVH - PVH Corp. Licenses Warner's, Olga Brands

(http://www.wwd.com/markets-news/intimates-activewear/pvh-corp-licenses-warners-olga-brands-7725484)

  • "PVH Corp. has signed a licensing agreement with Vandale Industries Inc. to design, produce and market women’s shapewear, sleepwear, loungewear, robes, sports bras and athleticwear for the U.S. and Canadian markets bearing the Warner’s and Olga intimates nameplates. The deal includes subbrands Simply Perfect by Warner’s, Blissful Benefits by Warner’s and Body Heaven by Warner’s."
  • "The license runs through 2017. Deliveries of these product categories are scheduled to begin in February for spring."

EBAY - EBay Launches Full-Price Designer Shops

(http://www.wwd.com/retail-news/direct-internet-catalogue/ebay-launches-full-price-designer-shops-7721563?module=hp-featuredstories)

  • "EBay Inc. is cozying up to designer brands — and trying to shed once and for all the lingering perception that it’s just an auction site."
  • "The e-commerce and payment giant will today unveil Designer Collective at ebay.com/designercollective, a current-season, full-price shopping destination with 16 American-based brands, including Calvin Klein, Nicole Miller and Elie Tahari. EBay worked with the brands to build storefronts within the Designer Collective portion of its main Web site."