Arizona Economy Boosted By Above-average Retail Sales

Via Even without the lift from seasonal visitors, Arizona’s economy has been humming lately from above-average retail sales and rising employment, an economist reported Wednesday. Arizona retail sales tracked by Visa Inc., excluding vehicles, jumped 8.6 percent in March, compared with about 6 percent for the nation, said Wayne Best, chief economist for the global-payments company. Those figures exclude the impact of tourists in the state for recent sporting

Payless ShoeSource Will Close 7 Of Its Arizona Stores

Via Payless ShoeSource will close seven of its Arizona locations as it restructures nationwide operations after filing for bankruptcy. Last week, the shoe sales store announced the decision to close 400 shops across the country. “This is a difficult but necessary decision driven by the continued challenges of the retail environment, which will only intensify,” said Payless CEO Paul Jones. “We will build a stronger Payless for our customers, vendors

Via Scottsdale-based International Cruise & Excursions Inc., a specialist in travel packages for membership reward and loyalty-based programs, captured its third straight No. 1 ranking when the Phoenix Business Journal today published the 2017 edition of its annual Women-Owned Businesses list. The list is ranked by 2016 local revenue. International Cruise & Excursions, owned by Marcia and John Rowley, reported $773.7 million in local revenue. Second on the list

Arizona Companies Compete in National Brand-value Study

Via Who hasn’t rented a U-Haul truck, shopped for cat litter at PetSmart or viewed an outrageous GoDaddy TV commercial during the Super Bowl? Apparently a lot of people haven’t, because those three Arizona-based brands received no mention in a study of the most valuable and recognizable brands in America. In fact, no Arizona brands or companies rank among the top 500 nationally, according to a new study by London-based Brand Finance. That makes Arizona one

New York & Company Closing Downtown Phoenix Store

Via New York & Company Inc. (NYSE:NWY) will close its longstanding downtown Phoenix store at the Arizona Center March 25. The women’s clothing store has been at the downtown development for 26 years, according to a store employee. It is one of the few retail clothing stores in downtown Phoenix along with Urban Outfitters (Nasdaq; URBN) and Jos. A Bank at CityScape. The two-story store was mostly cleared out

Sprouts and Albertson's Talk Merger

The shares of Sprouts Farmers Market have jumped by more than 20 percent over the past week on speculation that the Phoenix-based chain of organic food stores could be acquired by Albertsons in a deal with potential impact to local shoppers and the companies’ more than 18,000 combined Arizona workers. A Bloomberg article late Sunday, without naming sources, reported that representatives of the two supermarket chains have held preliminary merger talks. Sprouts stock

Arizona Center Renovation

The Arizona Center in downtown Phoenix is getting a multi-million dollar facelift. Via “This marks the start of a multi-million dollar refresh project that will transform the way Arizona Center looks and feels and also the way it welcomes residents, students, employees and visitors to our downtown,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, who drove a sledgehammer into a pillar to symbolically launch the redo. The center of shops, restaurants

Via Sprouts Farmers Market Inc. just opened its newest Atlanta store in Decatur and two more metro stores on the way, opening on April 26 near Northlake Mall in Tucker and in Woodstock in June. Atlanta is quickly becoming a major market for Phoenix, Ariz.-based Sprouts (Nasdaq: SFM), which will have 16 stores in metro Atlanta by mid 2017. Sprouts targets Baby Boomer, Gen-X and Millennial consumers who are

Tucson retail center to add 3 stores

The ground was broken Thursday for a retail project in Tucson, which will include three additional stores at Houghton Town Center near Houghton and Old Vail Roads. Via Ryan Companies US is the owner, developer and general contractor of the retail project and is partnered with Diamond Ventures to add the three new retail stores. The additions will include 56,000 square feet of retail space at the center. The tenants