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HCN Stock Watch: Market picks up

BY HBSDEALER Staff

After nearly a week’s worth of bearish progress, HCN stocks took a turn for the better at Monday’s close.

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IKEA is coming to Las Vegas in 2016

BY HBSDealer Staff

IKEA announced its plans to build a Las Vegas location, to be opened in the summer of 2016.

So far, the retailer has submitted its plans to Nevada’s Clark County. The 351,000-sq.-ft. store would be located in the Spring Valley area, approximately 13 miles southwest of downtown Las Vegas.

“We look forward to continue growing our western U.S. presence with IKEA Las Vegas,” said IKEA U.S. CFO Rob Olson. “This accessible location would provide the already 101,000 Las Vegas-area customers a store of their own and introduce the unique IKEA shopping experience to other consumers throughout Clark County and Southern Nevada.”

The proposed location would be built on 26 acres along Interstate-215 at Durango Drive, near the intersection with Sunset Road.

Over 500 jobs are expected to be created during the construction phase, and 300 permanent retail slots would be added when the store opens.

Its nearby store count includes existing locations in Covina, California; Tempe, Arizona; or Draper, Utah.

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Briggs & Stratton shifts production to cut costs

BY HBSDealer Staff

As of the 2016 lawn & garden season, Briggs & Stratton is trimming down on its production to help cut costs, which will include limiting its Snapper consumer lawn and garden equipment and consolidating its products manufacturing facilities.

The company will also close its McDonough, Georgia location and consolidate production into existing facilities in Wisconsin and New York. 

The production of pressure washers, snow throwers and lawn tractors will move to the Wauwatosa, Wisconsin manufacturing facility, and production of zero-turn lawnmowers will move to its facility in Munnsville, New York. About 220 new full-time positions and 150 seasonal jobs will be added at the Wauwatosa location; numbers will remain relatively unchanged in Munnsville.

Briggs & Stratton will continue its dealer product offerings under the Snapper Pro, Simplicity and Ferris brands. Sales of Snapper and Murray products at Walmart will also continue as usual.

"While we have seen improved sales of our lawn and garden equipment during our fiscal 2014, in an effort to improve the operating performance of our Products business, we believe it is necessary to simplify our Snapper product line, reduce our offerings of certain low volume and lower-priced Snapper lawn and garden products and reduce the related manufacturing capacity and expenses," said Todd Teske, chairman, president and CEO of Briggs & Stratton Corporation. "We will continue executing our strategy to focus on those premium products that generate higher margins and returns for our shareholders."

The changes will ultimately affect about 475 employees. Briggs & Stratton will be lending a hand through assistance programs, continued benefits and outplacement services.

The total cost of the restructuring is estimated to total $30 million to $37 million; the annual cost savings are estimated to be about $15 million to $20 million.

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