Zale Corp. announced Wednesday that Robert J. DiNicola will retire as chairman of the board, but will remain a member of the board of directors. President and CEO Beryl Raff will become chairman and retain the CEO title, and Executive Vice President and COO Alan Shor will become president and continue as COO. Shor also was appointed to the board of directors.
DiNicola steered the company out of bankruptcy protection and into profitability when many thought it couldn't survive. "We are deeply indebted to Bob for coming to Zale when the situation was extremely bleak," Raff says. "Due to his unyielding dedication to fundamental operating principles coupled with his extraordinary vision, he rebuilt the company and repositioned it for long-term growth."
The same day as the announcement about DiNicola, Zale Corp. released results of the fiscal year ending July 31. Earnings totaled $111.5 million on sales of $1.794 billion. Compared with fiscal 1999, earnings rose 38% and sales rose 26%. Comparable store sales increased by 6.4%. Zale operates about 1,390 specialty retail jewelry stores throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.
- by Julia M. Duncan