Sears Holdings completes divestment of Hometown, Outlet businesses
Sears Holdings has successfully separated out its Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores businesses.
Sears Hometown will be its own company, trading on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol "SHOS." Sears Holdings will continue to be listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol "SHLD." Sears Holdings received aggregate gross proceeds from the separation transactions of $446.5 million, consisting of a cash dividend of $100 million paid by Sears Hometown prior to the separation and aggregate gross proceeds from the rights offering of $346.5 million.
As previously announced, the rights offering was fully subscribed, with more than 95% of the outstanding shares of common stock of Sears Hometown being subscribed for pursuant to the exercise of basic subscription rights and the balance being subscribed for pursuant to the over-subscription privilege. Accordingly, Sears Holdings distributed a total of 23,100,000 shares of Sears Hometown common stock to the holders of subscription rights who validly exercised their subscription rights and paid the subscription price in full.
In addition, as part of the separation transactions consummated Thursday, Sears Hometown entered into an asset-based senior secured revolving credit facility with a group of financial institutions to provide (subject to availability under a borrowing base) for aggregate maximum borrowings of $250 million, borrowings under which were used to fund the dividend paid to Sears Holdings.
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WaterSense announces Partners of the Year
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently honored five organizations as 2012 WaterSense Partners of the Year. The awards program recognizes WaterSense partners who help advance the overall mission of WaterSense, increase awareness of the WaterSense brand and demonstrate overall excellence in the water efficiency arena.
WaterSense-labeled products and more than 2,600 WaterSense partners nationwide have helped American businesses and households save 287 billion gallons of water and $4.7 billion in water and energy bills.
“WaterSense is proud to partner with these champions of water efficiency who share our mission to protect the future of our nation’s water supply,” said Nancy Stoner, EPA’s acting Assistant Administrator for Water. “The 2012 WaterSense Partners of the Year were exceptional in their efforts to support innovative approaches to help people and companies save water and money on utility bills nationwide.”
WaterSense recognized the following Partners of the Year:
Manufacturer Partners of the Year
American Standard Brands earned a Manufacturer Partner of the Year Award for developing a WaterSense-labeled toilet model that can be installed without tools. American Standard also toured the country with an educational display that demonstrated how WaterSense-labeled faucets, toilets and showerheads work.
Kohler Co., a three-time WaterSense Manufacturer Partner of the Year, introduced its most water-efficient dual-flush toilet in 2011. The company also more than doubled the number of WaterSense-labeled showerheads it offers and supported and participated in the “Wasting Water Is Weird” consumer education campaign to promote water conservation.
Retailer Partner of the Year
Lowe’s Companies became a three-time WaterSense Retailer Partner of the Year by supporting and participating in the “Wasting Water Is Weird” campaign to promote water conservation and training its sales associates on water savings and usability of WaterSense-labeled products. Lowe’s customers saved about 4 billion gallons of water in 2011 with WaterSense products.
Promotional Partner of the Year
Colorado Springs Utilities was named the WaterSense Promotional Partner of the Year for helping a local builder create the first WaterSense-labeled home in Colorado. The utility also encouraged commercial kitchens in the area to try pre-rinse spray valves that helped save more than 20 million gallons of water.
Builder Partner of the Year
KB Home, a two-time WaterSense Builder Partner of the Year, built nearly 100 WaterSense-labeled homes in 2011 and introduced a model home designed to achieve net-zero energy use and the highest levels of water and other resource efficiency.
The Partner of the Year awards were presented at the WaterSmart Innovations conference in Las Vegas.
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Advice for employers: Stress total rewards
The SHRM 2012 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement survey published Oct. 3, 2012, includes commentary from several experts, as well as a few key recommendations for employers.
Among the recommendations:
Develop existing employees. Frequently, employees have skills and abilities beyond the position for which they were hired, the report notes. HR professionals can help their organizations identify such skills and prepare employees to fill higher-level positions, thus opening up positions that require lower skill levels, which might be easier to fill.
Communicate about total rewards. Research shows that compensation/pay is very important to employees, yet satisfaction levels are low. HR professionals can share information about the organization’s compensation philosophy, help employees understand how their compensation/pay is determined and communicate frequently to employees what their total rewards package includes.
Build a bridge between employees and senior management. Two of the top five contributors to employee job satisfaction were their relationship with immediate supervisor and communication between employees and senior management. Employers can train line managers regularly and involve them in strategy meetings and activities, so they better understand the organization’s vision and share it with their direct reports. Line managers can be encouraged to listen to and push employee feedback up to senior management.
In total, 600 employed individuals randomly selected from an outside survey research organization’s web-enabled employee panel completed the online 2012 Job Satisfaction and Engagement Survey.
Detailed statistics comparing findings over time, as well as by race, gender, generation and other factors, where statistically significant, are included in the report’s appendix.
Rebecca R. Hastings, SPHR, is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
©2012 SHRM. All rights reserved.
Have HR-related questions and concerns? Get access to essential forms, policies and guides, plus a live call center, at ToolkitHR.com, powered by HCN and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).
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