OEConnection LLC, the Richfield supply chain/auto parts provider, has completed its purchase of UK-based Clifford Thames Group as part of its plans to expand globally.
The deal closed on June 30, OEConnection, also known as OEC, said in a news release.
Clifford Thames brings complementary products and services and an extensive international footprint, OEC said.
The newly unified company now has about $130 million in annual revenue and creates a global parts and service business with 13 offices across four continents, the company said. OEC will maintain its headquarters in Richfield.
OEC provides supply chain and ecommerce technology solutions for automotive original equipment parts.
“The new OEC is the only global one-stop shop that provides the means for automakers and dealerships around the world to deliver parts and service information quickly and accurately into the hands of repairers in collision, fleet, mechanical and retail segments,” Chuck Rotuno, OEC chairman and chief executive officer, said in the news release.
Providence Equity Partners, the majority owner of OEC, described its significant Clifford Thames investment as “transformational.”
“Both OEC and [Clifford Thames] had record years in 2016 with revenue growth in excess of 20 percent and combined now have over $130 million in revenues, setting up OEC to capitalize on further opportunities ahead,” Davis Noell, managing director of Providence Equity Partners, said in the news release.
The Development Fund of the Western Reserve has raised $3.59 million toward its goal of $4.5 million and expects to close financing of the new Akron Community Revitalization Loan Fund in the near future.
Once the financing is closed – no date has been announced – the fund expects to begin funding business development projects in Akron’s poorest neighborhoods. An advisory committee made up of Akron-area funders will decide which projects get funding.
The development fund and the loan fund are affiliated with the Development Finance Authority of Summit County, which announced the fund-raising totals in its latest newsletter.
The development fund has dedicated $6.75 million in federal New Markets Tax Credits to capitalize the Akron loan fund. After investors buy the tax credits, the fund will get $2.25 million in new cash equity.
Corporations, organizations and individuals have donated to the loan fund.
The former Dollar Express store on Vernon Odom Boulevard in Akron is expected to reopen as a Dollar General store by late fall.
Dollar General on Thursday said it plans to renovate and convert the store at 498 Vernon Odom Blvd. into a Dollar General store as part of the company’s purchase earlier this year of all 300 Dollar Express LLC stores in the U.S.
The Akron store is expected to have between six and 10 employees, the company said in a news release.
The store will sell name-brand and private brand health and beauty products, home cleaning supplies, housewares, stationery, seasonal items, clothing, and packaged, refrigerated and frozen food.
Going into the Fourth of July holiday, Diebold Nixdorf Inc. in Green had a market value of approximately $2.1 billion, based on a per-share price of $28.
The day after the Fourth of July, the Green maker of ATMs and financial services software was worth hundreds of millions of dollars less after the company surprised investors and lowered revenue and earnings forecasts for the second time this year.
Diebold Nixdorf stock plunged $6.40, or 22.9 percent, to $21.60 after the company warned Wednesday it expects to lose $1.45 to $1.65 a share on revenue of $4.7 billion to $4.8 billion for fiscal 2017.
Based on the closing share price, Diebold Nixdorf ended Wednesday with a market value of $1.63 billion – about $430 million less than at the market’s close on Monday.
Adjusted earnings are expected to show a full-year profit of 95 cents to $1.15 a share, down from $1.40 to $1.70 a share, the company said. The company issued its warning before the stock market opened.
The company in May first lowered its earnings guidance when it told investors it expected to lose 65 cents to 95 cents per share on revenue of $5 billion for the year.
The company had issued initial guidance of a loss of $30 million to $55 million, or 40 to 70 cents per share, on revenue of $5 billion to $5.1 billion for the current fiscal year. The company in February reaffirmed that original fiscal guidance.
Diebold Nixdorf said in its Wednesday press release that its banking business is increasingly made up of large, complex projects with higher software content, resulting in a longer customer decision-making process and “order-to-revenue conversion cycle.” As a result, the timing and volume of orders to date means the company needs to adjust its 2017 guidance, Diebold said.
The delay in systems rollouts also has hurt the company’s service business and that, along with related factors, will pressure profit margins, the company said.
“Clearly, we are disappointed in our near-term financial performance,” Andy W. Mattes, president and chief executive officer, said in a press release. “That said, we continue to improve our operating expenses from the prior year and are taking steps to further accelerate our cost reductions. … We are committed to realizing the full potential of our new company and delivering results for all our stakeholders.”
Diebold is increasing its savings target, announced earlier this year, from $200 million to $240 million, Mattes said. The savings are part of what Diebold calls its DN2020 program, announced in February, to integrate its businesses, save money and increase annual revenue to $5.5 billion by 2020.
Diebold Nixdorf continues to digest its 2016 acquisition of German ATM maker Wincor Nixdorf for $1.8 billion as well as refocusing to become less reliant on ATM manufacturing and to increase emphasis on financial software and services.
Diebold Nixdorf plans to release second quarter 2017 financial results on July 19 before the stock market opens.
It’ll be two stints as CEO and out for Joseph Gingo at A. Schulman Inc.
The Fairlawn polymer company said Tuesday it will begin a national search for a new chief executive officer, with the position to be filled when Gingo’s two-year contract as CEO expires in August 2018. Gingo will stay with A. Schulman as executive chairman.
Gingo, 72, also A. Schulman’s board chairman and president, is working his second stint as the company’s CEO.
He was hired in 2008 after 40 years at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. to be A. Shulman’s CEO and held that position until the end of 2014, when he was succeeded by Bernard Rzepka as CEO. The company said Gingo led Schulman through a period of significant growth and value creation.
Gingo, who was A. Schulman’s board chairman at the time, was rehired as CEO in 2016 after Rzepka, a long-time A. Schulman executive, resigned following poor company financial performance.
A. Schulman Inc. said in a news release it will hire a leading executive search firm to assist its board of directors for a new CEO. Gingo will also assist in the search.
“It has been a privilege to serve twice as this company’s CEO. When I rejoined A. Schulman last August, my mandate was clear – put in place the structure and processes necessary to return the company to the growth trajectory we experienced from 2010 to 2015,” Gingo said in a press release. “I am increasingly confident that after this current reset year, we will be firmly on the right path. As we approach the halfway point of my two-year commitment, it also is important that we execute a thorough and thoughtful leadership transition.”
The A. Schulman board deeply appreciates Gingo’s leadership “as we reposition the company for growth and enhanced shareholder value,” David Birney, lead independent director, said in a news release. “Since first joining A. Schulman in 2008, Joe’s passion for the business and focus on the customer has helped transform the company into an industry leader that customers rely upon to achieve their success.”
Drugstore chain giant Walgreens is opening a niche pharmacy in downtown Akron.
The “Community, A Walgreens Pharmacy” is expected to open next month – a specific date has not yet been set – on South Main Street at Cedar Street. The business is near Jimmy John’s sandwich shop, a new hair salon and across the street from popular downtown spots that include The Diamond Deli.
The small pharmacy-only store will focus on people with complex health needs – initially HIV/AIDS, chronic inflammatory disease, and cancer, a Walgreens spokesman said.
The Community pharmacy will be one of approximately 260 specialty pharmacies Walgreens now has in the United States. Walgreens (parent corporation is Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.) as of 2016 had 8,175 stores in the U.S.; about 250 in Ohio.
A typical full-service Walgreens drugstore is about 14,400 square feet in size. The Akron pharmacy will be much smaller – 1,900 square feet.
The Akron store will have four employees: Two pharmacists and two pharmacy technicians. The larger Walgreens stores typically have 27 employees.
The nearest full-service, 24-hour pharmacy Walgreens site to the upcoming Akron store is on State Road in Cuyahoga Falls.
The jobless rate in Summit County ticked up slightly in May compared to April and a year ago, state figures released Tuesday show.
Summit County’s unemployment rate last month rose to 4.5 percent from 4.4 percent in April and 4.4 percent a year ago, according to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
Akron’s unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.2 percent in May, April and a year ago.
The jobless rate in Cuyahoga Falls was 4.1 percent last month, up from 3.9 percent in April and unchanged from May 2016.
Rates were not adjusted to take into account seasonal changes.
The comparable Ohio unemployment rate for May was 4.6 percent; the seasonally adjusted rate was 4.9 percent. The comparable U.S. unemployment rate was 4.1 percent, with the seasonally adjusted rate for May at 4.3 percent.
Unemployment rates increased in 53 of Ohio’s 88 counties. Rates fell in 27 counties and were unchanged in eight.
Rates ranged from a low of 2.8 percent in Mercer County to a high of 7.2 percent in Monroe County.
Jobless rates elsewhere in Northeast Ohio for May, April and May 2016:
• Cuyahoga County: 6.1, 5.7, 5.1
• Cleveland: 7.6, 7.2, 6.6
• Medina County: 4.8, 4.4, 3.9
• Portage County: 4.4, 4.4, 4.2
• Stark County: 4.7, 4.7, 4.8
• Canton: 5.7, 5.6, 5.9
• Wayne County: 3.5, 3.2, 3.4
Independent tire testing firm Smithers Rapra began expanding its tire and wheel test center in Ravenna this week.
Akron-based Smithers Rapra is adding new equipment to its facility that will accommodate most passenger and light truck tires on the market. Ground broke on the project Thursday.
The expansion is expected to be complete in July 2018. Smithers Rapra said it will add several technical jobs at the facility as part of the project.
The site, on North Freedom Street, is the company’s main tire testing facility for its North American operations.
The groundbreaking was attended by representatives of tire makers Goodyear, Bridgestone, Michelin, Hankook, Cooper, and Continental, and others including local politicians.
More than 1,000 Goodyear employees in Akron participated in the tire maker’s first week of volunteering program, volunteering more than 5,000 hours.
Worldwide, more than 1,250 Goodyear employees gave more than 6,000 hours of their time. That equates to nearly $300,000 worth of time to 69 projects, Goodyear said in a news release.
In Akron, volunteers helped 12 non-profit organizations, including teaching professional development workshops. The seven-day program ended June 7.
Volunteers donated their time to benefit area youth through safety and STEM education programs, installed smoke alarms in homes, repacked food at the Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank; beautified landmark areas of Akron, and completed nearly three-years-worth of maintenance work at the YMCA Camp Y-Noah.
“Our first week of volunteering was an incredible success that brought our company’s approach toward giving back in our communities, Goodyear Better Future, to life,” Alison White, Goodyear’s director of community engagement, said in a release. Goodyear Better Future is the company’s corporate social responsibility strategy.
One of Signet Jewelers Ltd.’s top executives, newly promoted Chief Operations Officer Bryan Morgan, has resigned “due to violations of company policy,” the national retailer said.
The Akron company did not offer additional details in a filing Monday with federal regulators other than to say the resignation was unrelated to financial matters. Morgan resigned on June 2, according to the filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Morgan, 40, was on a fast track at Signet, whose brands include Kay Jewelers, Jared and Zales. He joined Signet in June 2007; the company noted in its latest proxy that Morgan subsequently held positions of increasing responsibility.
Morgan was promoted to chief operations officer in January from executive vice president of supply chain management and repair. He reported directly to Chief Executive Officer Mark Light.
In announcing Morgan’s promotion and that of others at the company, Signet said then it was consolidating responsibility for information technology modernization, transformational initiatives and achieving operational efficiencies throughout Signet’s supply chain under the new COO.
“The ongoing modernization of Signet’s IT systems is critical to meeting increasing consumer demand and supporting an exceptional online shopping experience,” Light said in its January press release. “Bryan will be responsible for working closely with our chief information officer to deliver against our IT systems objectives.”
The company also said then that Morgan was to lead Signet’s transformational initiatives and operational efficiency objectives, along with current responsibilities “for the expansion and harmonization of Signet’s international distribution centers and logistics, implementing enhancements to customer repair procedures, and continuously improving the company’s strategic procurement processes.”
Signet’s proxy, filed May 4, did not list Morgan’s salary as the new chief operations officer but did show that his predecessor was paid a base salary of $710,646 in fiscal 2017, with total compensation of nearly $1.6 million.
In 2014, the company named Morgan senior vice president of corporate supply chain management and facilities. In 2010, Morgan was promoted to vice president, procurement.
The Greater Akron Chamber in 2014 named Morgan one of its “30 For The Future” award winners for young professionals. The award honors people ages 25 to 39.
He was also a member of the 2010-11 Leadership Akron class.
Akron polymer products maker and tool distributor Myers Industries Inc. will pay a quarterly cash dividend of 13.5 cents per share on July 5 to shareholders of record as of June 16.
Summa Health relaxes its controversial dress code: female employees can toss their pantyhose. Read the story here.
Signet Jewelers will sell its prime credit portfolio for $1 billion later this year in a move that means about 900 of its Akron employees will end up working for the company’s new credit partners.
Signet, whose corporate headquarters is in Akron, on Thursday morning announced the long-awaited credit portfolio divestiture, aimed in large part at reducing financial risk, alongside the release of what it called “tough” first quarter financial results. Signet is the world’s largest jewelry company whose brands include Sterling, Zale, Kay, Jared, Piercing Pagoda and others.
The company said the credit divestiture will be a “phased, strategic sale.”
Shares of Signet were down $3.65, or 6.7 percent, to $50.89 as of 2:20 p.m. Shares are down 46 percent since Jan. 1 and are down 53 percent from a year ago.
Columbus-based Alliance Data will pay $1 billion to buy the company’s prime credit portfolio in October, Signet said. As part of that, Alliance will take on about 250 Signet employees in Akron and related facilities.
Genesis Financial Solutions will end up servicing non-prime Signet credit accounts, also starting in October. Genesis will retain about 650 Signet employees and related facilities in Akron as part of the transaction, the company said.
The first phase of the credit portfolio sale makes up about 55 percent of Signet’s accounts receivables, the company said.
Signet’s separation of the remaining parts of its non-prime credit portfolio will be completed after this year, top executives said in a conference call with industry analysts.
“We believe today’s announcement regarding the first phase of the strategic outsourcing of our credit portfolio will unlock significant value as it drives EPS accretion and increases our capital efficiency, while enabling us to maintain the full spectrum of our competitive retail credit offering and net sales,” Mark Light, Signet chief executive officer, said in a press release. “Additionally, we will continue to pursue a fully-outsourced model that removes the remaining credit risk from our balance sheet through capital providers.”
Signet said it will use the credit portfolio sales proceeds to reduce debt and buy back shares.
Light said the company’s first quarter results were disappointing and driven in large part by overall weakness in retail as well as a slowdown in jewelry spending.
“As anticipated, we had a very slow start to the year,” he said. Valentine’s Day sales were poor but sales improved going into Mother’s Day, he said.
For its first quarter ending April 29, Signet reported net income of $78.5 million, or $1.03 a share, on revenue of $1.4 billion. Net income was down 84 cents from a year ago. Revenue was down $175.5 million from the first quarter a year ago.
Sales of stores open at least a year were down 11.5 percent from the same period a year ago.
Even with the bad start to the fiscal year, the company reaffirmed its full-year fiscal guidance.
Signet is upgrading its e-commerce platform in response to what Light called a “secular shift” among consumers to online purchases. Signet will close between 165 and 170 poor-performing, primarily mall-based stores in the current fiscal year while continuing to open new, “off mall” locations, he said.
Signet said its e-commerce offerings continue to show strength.
Akron-Canton Airport is offering another free Mom’s Tour to offer families who have concerns about flying with small children a chance for a trial run.
The tour follows a successful and well-received first Mom’s Tour by the airport in February.
The next tour will be on June 13 with two options: a morning tour from 10-11:30 a.m. and an evening tour from 5:30-7 p.m.
To read the Beacon Journal’s story about the first Mom’s Tour and see a video, go here.
“We enjoyed seeing how well-received our first Mom’s Tour was in the community,” said Rick McQueen, President and CEO of Akron-Canton Airport. “And, we look forward to continuing to offer such a great opportunity and resource to parents and families to help prepare them and make their travel experience as enjoyable as possible.”
The CAK Moms Tour is designed to help alleviate anxiety parents have while traveling with little ones. CAK understands that the travel experience with kids can feel intimidating and the team wants to do everything possible to make the journey easy-breezy for each family that chooses CAK for their travel adventures.
During the tour, moms will park, ride the shuttle bus to the airport, walk through the airline check-in process with their little ones, pass through security screening with baby gear, and navigate through the airport to their gates. Representatives from Spirit Airlines and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will cover common questions, such as what baby gear travels free, what kid-friendly snack items can be taken through TSA, and more.
CAK plans to host these tours twice a year, with room to grow based on demand. The two upcoming tours are open to the public, and moms can sign up online at http://www.akroncantonairport.com/flying-with-kids/tour-sign-up. Space is limited and participation will be confirmed on a first come, first served basis. Parents are encouraged to ask questions and share their family-friendly ideas with the airport.
A Flying with Children resource guide that includes helpful tips about traveling with kids, including airline-specific requirements for carry-on items, strollers, car seats and ticket purchases, as well as an outline of TSA rules for child nutrition and screening procedures is available on akroncantonairport.com