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Weyerhaeuser names real estate head

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Forest products giant Weyerhaeuser has named Larry Burrows to the position of president and CEO of Weyerhaeuser Real Estate, effective March 31.

Burrows currently serves as president of Winchester Homes, Weyerhaeuser’s home-building operation in the Washington, D.C., area. In his new role, Burrows will oversee five local real estate companies and the company’s builder financing operation.

“The real estate business represents an important business for Weyerhaeuser and one where we envision future growth,” said Daniel Fulton, who is retiring as president and CEO of the real estate division. “Larry’s 32 years in the industry gives him the experience necessary to lead us through these current challenging market conditions while positioning us for that growth.”

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IKEA opens to fanfare in Cincinnati

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Few retailers are able to generate as much excitement around a store opening as Sweden-based IKEA, exemplified by the crowds at a grand opening of the company’s first Ohio store near Cincinnati yesterday.

The opening of the store, based in West Chester, Ohio, included costumed dancers and singers from the Swedes of Greater Cincinnati, and several door prizes, including gift cards and merchandise. Security officials were turning some shoppers away, who then circled the store until they could get inside, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Some customers staked out the store “for nearly 48 hours — the maximum allowed by the store,” explained the Indianapolis Star.

According to the Oxford (Ohio) Press, an estimated 10,000 customers entered the store in the first hour after its 9 a.m. grand opening.

The new IKEA store features three model homes, 50 room settings, a supervised children’s play area and a 300-seat restaurant.

Other Ikea retail locations in the Midwest include stores in Bloomington, Minn.; Schaumburg, Ill.; and Canton, Mich., a location that opened just two months ago.

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Sears Holdings taps Meijer exec for operations job

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Sears Holdings has announced that Kevin Holt, 49, will take on the role of executive vp-store operations.

The store operations group is one of five new “umbrella” units the company is creating as part of a reorganization process — the others are brands, real estate, support and online.

Holt most recently served as executive vp-retail operations at multichannel big-box retailer Meijer, where he worked for 13 years. He has been with Sears since September 2007 as senior vp and chief effectiveness officer.

Most recently, Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears Holdings reported net income and sales down for the fourth quarter and year ended Feb. 1.

For the quarter, the company reported net income of $426 million, down 47.5 percent from $811 million in the prior-year quarter. Net sales were $15.1 billion, down 6.8 percent from $16.1 billion from the previous year.

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