Executive Consultant Susan McGalla Thinks Two New Walmart Changes May Help The Giant Retailer

Everyone has an opinion about Walmart. Four decades ago, Walmart changed the retail business, and small independent retailers couldn’t keep up with that change. The first change that Walmart instituted was buying in large quantities. The second was buying cheap, according to Pittsburgh executive consultant Susan McGalla. Walmart didn’t care much about the quality of their products when the chain first got started, but the executives in charge at the time quickly realized that was a big mistake. McGalla said Walmart spent a lot of money and did a huge amount of research to solve that problem. Walmart developed a quality control department that set standards for all vendors. Those standards change the quality of the products that Walmart offered consumers.

Over the years, other retail giants have taken several lessons from the Walmart playbook, and those companies have taken a major bite of Walmart’s market share. McGalla is familiar with how the retail business works because of her association with American Outfitters, and Wet Seal. Both of those companies were hurt by Walmart initially, but McGalla changed the direction of both companies and pulled them out of the destructive Walmart wake.

Ms. McGalla said Walmart has made several mistakes over the years, and those mistakes are now impacting the profitability of the company. One major mistake was not stocking shelves in a timely manner, and another was not paying hourly employees a decent wage. Walmart is facing serious sales and profit issues in today’s market, according to McGalla, and the company is trying to correct things before the chain takes a major Sears-type nose dive.

McGalla said Walmart is making two new changes to head off disaster especially in the chain’s superstores. The executives have decided to cut the number of products it sells in its big stores. McGalla said rather than selling four sizes of mustard in those stores; the stores will only carry two sizes. Superstores normally carry 120,000 products and executives have already cut 2,500 of those products, and more cuts are on the way, according to McGalla. Cutting the assortment of products in those stores could hurt sales, but McGalla thinks the opposite might happen.

Another big change is the height of their shelves in the checkout area. That doesn’t sound like a major change, but that will eliminate millions of dollars in sales because there will be no room for gum, candy and magazines in those areas. The reason, according to McGalla, is for visual effect. Critics say cutting millions of dollars in gum and candy sales is a bad idea, but McGalla thinks the stores need a facelift, and this is one of the first steps in the process. McGalla thinks Walmart stores look tired and out of touch with today’s consumers. In order to keep up with the competition, Walmart must change its image.

An image change doesn’t happen overnight. It is an expensive process, and that means stockholders won’t be happy. But it is necessary if Walmart wants to stay on top. Sears was in a similar situation 25 or 30 years ago, and the executives didn’t’ react. McGalla said retailers that don’t react to market changes usually lose consumer confidence and when that happens, reorganizing or going out of business becomes a nasty reality for them.

On Big Companies – CCMP Capital

Stephen Murray CCMP Capital is a private equity invested company that focuses on growth capital transactions and leveraged buyout. It is divided into specific sectors.

The Consumer sector, under the lead of Thomas Walker and Richard Zammin, specifies in mass channel supply, multi-channel marketing, and specialty retailing. The Industrial sector is under the leadership of Timothy Walsh. The Healthcare sector is in charge of allocation of medical products and its provision through managed care organizations. The Energy sector is under the leadership of Christopher Behrens, and it focuses on providing power and midstream services.

The company has been known by several names throughout its existence.

First founded as Chemical Venture partners in 1984, it started growing rapidly. In its first years, it served as the venture capital arm of Chemical Bank. In 1996, after the acquisition of Chase Manhattan bank, the firm changed its name for the first time, incorporating the name of the bank with its own, thus becoming known as Chase Capital Partners. Later, in the year of 2000, after another acquisition of J.P. Morgan & Co., the group changed the name again, now to JP Morgan Partners.

Following the acquisition of Bank One, JP Morgan Partners announced their spinout from JP Morgan Chase. This new firm adopted CCMP acronym in reference to all predecessors. (Chemical, Chase, and JP Morgan).

The firm continued to grow and be one of the most successful businesses, with over $12 billion in leveraged buyout and growth capital transactions since its founding.

A lot of this success is due to one man – Stephen P. Murray.

He was born on August 2, 1962, in Brooklyn, New York City, and raised in North Tarrytown. After completing his high school education in Sleepy Hollow High School, he left for Boston, where he graduated with a degree in Economics in 1984. One of the things that helped him along the way is entering the credit analyst training program at manufactures Hannover. In 1989, he earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration at Columbia Business School. He married his college sweetheart Tami Anne Morti and had four sons, Ryan, Sean, James, and Nolan. He was in charge of his firm, CCMP Capital, since its founding and followed it through its many changes, developments, and growths.

Murray was also a great philanthropist. He supported the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Metro New York, Stamford Museum, the Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County, Columbia Business School, and Boston College. He was Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Boston College. He is best known for his membership on the Chairman’s Council of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Metro New York.

Unfortunately, his health began to fail, and his condition became serious in February this year. He passed away in his home in Stamford, on March 12, at the early age of 52.

Health Care In The US

Health care in the United States has a bad rap. Health care, something many countries consider to be a basic right, is controlled by big business. Americans can get quality care if they are willing to pay a pretty penny. People with less money get worse service. On top of astronomical costs of deductibles and co-pays, many people spend up to 30% of their weekly income just to provide themselves and their family with healthcare.

The health care system in this country is a bit complex. The first step in the process is obtaining health insurance. If you have a qualifying income, you can take advantage of the health insurance that the government provides. If your income does not qualify, you must obtain your insurance elsewhere.

You might have insurance available through your employer. Insurance through your employer will save you money, however it takes almost all of the decision-making power away from the people. One major benefit of employment-based health care is that it is taken out of your paycheck pre-taxes, therefore saving you money.

If you do not have an employer that provides insurance, you will need to seek private party insurance. There is insurance available in the market from Obamacare as well as directly from insurance companies. While this provides the ability to make a lot of decisions yourself, it is also the most expensive option.

Once you have obtained your health insurance coverage, you can find a doctor. By calling your insurance provider, you will be given a doctor. Should you decide to choose your own doctor that is out of network, you will need to pay out of pocket and be reimbursed. In some instances, your insurance may only reimburse you up to a certain percentage when you go out of network.

If you have a specific problem, you will need to see a specialist. You can not go directly to a specialist. Yoh must first go to your general care provider and be given a recommendation for a specalist. This is an extra visit and extra money.

Nobilis Health is working to give the American health care system a better name. Nobilis Health is constantly striving to provide the best possible patient satisfaction, superior medical care compared to its competitors, and the lowest possible cost for the delivery of health care.

Nobilis Health Corp. Has a collective and expansive list of core competencies including legal, marketing, finance and the development/management of surgical centers. The company is dedicated to patient advocacy and making sure their clients get the best service for the least amount of money.

The health care system in this country is greatly flawed. With laws such as Obamacare and companies such as Nobilis Health, we are moving toward a system of better, more honest health care for the people of the free world. With more companies operating like Nobilis Health, our country could become one of the best health care providers.

Magic Mike XXL, A Strong Stripping Sequel

Channing Tatum was already a star when the first “Magic Mike” film was released, but this charmingly wild stripper comedy-drama put Tatum into the movie star stratosphere. Many fans already knew Tatum as a talented actor who could play comedy or drama, but few knew he had a real history as a strip dancer. His onstage presence and talent as a dancer put “Magic Mike” over the top, and the success of that film left audiences clamoring for more.

Now comes the sequel, “Magic Mike XXL,” which is produced by Steve Soderbergh (who directed the first film) and directed by Gregory Jacobs (who was assistant director on “Magic Mike). This film has a lighter tone than the original “Magic Mike,” and it packs in plenty of stripper numbers that are fun and not a little bit wild. Fans of Channing Tatum and his handsome gang of stripper pals will not be disappointed. The plot of this Magic Mike involves Mike being coaxed out of retirement by his stripper buddies.

Along the way to the convention, Mike and the gang run into many interesting female characters, which is a good excuse to bring in some strong actresses. The female stars here include Jada Pinkette Smith as a nightclub owner and Andi MacDowell as a frustrated wife who takes up with one of the stripper guys.

Former teen soap star Crystal Hunt also makes a strong appearance in this film as an eccentric young blonde the guys meet in their travels. Hunt, who is soon to appear in the “Queens of Drama” series on the Pop TV Network, has great presence here, which bodes well for her future in major motion pictures.

There’s no question that “Magic Mike XXL” comes through as a compelling comedy with highly entertaining dance numbers. Fans of male stripping and of Channing Tatum will definitely not be disappointed.

Bruce Levenson: Much More Than Just An NBA Owner

Many people first became aware of Bruce Levenson when he was part of the Atlanta Spirit group that bought the Atlanta Hawks basketball team, Atlanta Thrashers ice hockey team, and operating rights to Phillips Arena. But long before Bruce Levenson became an NBA owner, he was an attorney, a successful businessman, and a long-time philanthropist. The Chevy Chase, Maryland native co-founded the very successful United Communications Group, the U.S. Holocaust Museum, and among his charitable works created a non-profit organization on the University of Maryland campus that prepares students to create, lead, and support effective philanthropic organizations to help the less fortunate.

But Bruce Levenson’s work with the Atlanta Hawks is noteworthy. After becoming a majority partner in the group that purchased the Hawks, he was appointed to the NBA board of governors. This enabled him to have some impact on how the league is run. He has also presided over a sea change in the quality of the basketball the Hawks play while keeping the money they pay players under the salary cap. He also hired Danny Ferry a top-notch and very effective general manager and innovative head coach Mike Budenholzer. That combination led the Hawks to the best record in team history and a berth in the Eastern Conference finals for the first time.

In business circles, Bruce Levenson is not only known for his success at UCG, an industry leader in providing up to date information that’s essential for the energy, healthcare, financial services, and other fields, he also helped to create and run GasBuddy. GasBuddy is an app which helps drivers to find the lowest gas prices in their area. He’s also co-founder of the cooking technology company DOT, and on the board of directors of publicly traded IT company TechTarget. Levenson was elected to the Hall of Fame of the Software and Information Industry Association in 1997 for his contributions to the industry.

One of the projects in which Bruce Levenson is involved that has the potential to have the most widespread and long-lasting impact is his funding, founding, and development on the University of Maryland’s campus of the Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership. The center was created in 2010 and helps to make students aware of the needs of philanthropic organizations worldwide, helps them to understand how to assess the effectiveness of a philanthropic organization, and teaches students the skills needed to run a nonprofit organization. Levenson and his wife also give the center thousands of dollars each year to donate to the non-profit organizations they deem worthy.

So while as majority owner of the Atlanta Hawks Bruce Levenson has helped to turn the team into a contender and helped provide them with good players while remaining under the salary cap, he has done important work in other sectors as well. In fact, some feel his work assisting low-income, at-risk youth to pursue higher education through the I Have A Dream Foundation and his involvement with the Seeds of Peace are more noteworthy.

The Business Mogul with a Passion for Basketball

Many aspire to become great in the world, but only few people meet their long-aspired dreams and goals. This is due to lack of entrepreneurial skills, persistence and motivation to reach their goals. Those who fulfill their dreams become great in the field that they focus on while others diversify. Bruce Levenson is one of those people who have created a name for himself as a businessman and an NBA team owner of the Atlanta Hawks.

Bruce was born and raised by a Jewish family in Washington, D.C, and later grew up in Chevy Chase, Maryland. He went to college at Washington University in St. Louis before graduating from law school at American University. Levenson also had a career in journalism at the Washington Star while studying law.

In 1977, Bruce came together with Ed Peskowitz to co- found United Communications Group (UCG).UCG is a business information firm that focuses on news, data, and analysis for various sectors of the economy including energy, banking, technology, healthcare, and telecommunication among others. They started out humbly from Levenson’s apartment by publishing Oil Express, which was their first newsletter.

Currently, UCG is one of the leading privately held business information companies. It has databases that include Oil Price Information Services, which has led to the establishment of GasBuddy mobile application that aids vehicle owners and drivers locate lowly priced gas in their local area. In addition, UCG has a customer base of two million clients to whom it provides necessary business information regarding various sectors.

Later in 2004, the partnership between Bruce and Peskowitz yielded the Atlanta Hawks basketball team, which was bought from Turner Broadcasting. The Atlanta Hawks fall under the partnership Atlanta Hawks LLC .The operating rights of the Philip’s arena also falls under their partnership.

Previously, Levenson has held other leadership roles apart from being a member of the NBA board of governors. He is the founding member of publicly traded TechTarget ,where he served on the Board of Directors until 2012 .In recent times ,he has engaged in a partnership to form DOT, which is a company that has come up with a cooking technology that toasts bread in three seconds. This is testament to his business acumen.

Other than being an executive, Bruce is a humanitarian that actively engages in various philanthropic activities. Together with his wife, they have been on the front line to create the Center for Philanthropy and Non-profit Leadership at the University of Maryland. In the past, he has served as the president of “I Have a Dream Foundation” to aid children from low-income families attains higher education.

Away from being actively involved in business, Levenson is also a man who loves engaging in sports activities. His interests range from golf, basketball, and adventure travelling with a recent visit to Antarctica where he spent three nights in a tented camp.

Bruce and Ed Peskowitz are inductees of the Software and Information Industry Association’s Hall of Fame .This came about in 1997 for their excellent work in United Communications Group.

Levenson recently expressed interest in trading his partnership shares for the Atlanta Hawks, and the rights to Philips arena. A process that is still going on with various interests bidding for ownership of the team.