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 MIAMI, Aug. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- L. Luria & Son, Inc. (AMEX: LUR) (Luria's) said today that its chief financial officer has resigned and that the company has hired three key executives to help direct the company's transformation from a a catalog showroom chain into a specialty discount retailer.
 Luria's president, Peter Luria, said that Wallace D. Ruiz, chief financial officer, will leave the company Aug. 31 to pursue another business opportunity. Luria's has retained Herbert Mines Associates, Inc., a retail executive search firm, to assist in finding a replacement for Ruiz, he added.
 "Wally has done an excellent job," Luria said. "We're sorry to lose him, but he was presented with an opportunity he feels he cannot pass up."
 The three new executives joining Luria's are:
 -- Joseph F. Bombara, vice president-Stores and Operations
 -- Timothy E. Keeley, director of Real Estate
 -- Richard Marks, vice president-Jewelry Merchandising
 "Our expansion plans for the 1990s revolve around an exciting new superstore format designed to enhance shopping convenience," Luria said. "These executives bring a wealth of talent to help accomplish that effort."
 Luria said the recruitment of the three new executives is part of the company's overall strategy to shift from a catalog showroom format to specialty discount retailing over the next five years. That strategy calls for focusing on value pricing and implementing a new superstore concept that features self-service displays of merchandise and more in- store promotions, as well as check-out counters and shopping carts to make shopping faster and more convenient.
 Luria said that Bombara will be responsible for the store organization, in-store merchandising and display, staffing, training, customer service and distribution. Bombara has more than 30 years of retail experience, Luria said.
 "Joe is a seasoned veteran with extensive experience in discount retailing and mass merchandising," Luria added. "He has the vision that will help us move forward with our new superstore strategy."
 Bombara has held a variety of retail positions with experience in field operations, merchandising, marketing, advertising and executive management. Prior to joining Luria's, he served as Mid-Atlantic division president for McCrory Stores, an 800-store retail chain with $1.5 billion in sales. He also has held positions with Montgomery Ward and Hills Department Stores.
 Luria said that Kneeley will be responsible for store locations and expansion. "Tim has in-depth knowledge of real estate markets and major metropolitan U.S. cities," Luria said. "He will be instrumental in the strategic planning that will help us grow in Florida and elsewhere."
 Kneeley brings 21 years of experience in corporate real estate, legal documentation, demographic analysis, site selection and administration of real estate assets. He was most recently senior real estate manager for Toys "R" Us, Inc., where he was responsible for all real estate activities and new store development for Australia and Mexico. Prior to that, Kneeley was regional real estate manager for Toys "R" Us. He helped open more than 100 new stores in major U.S. markets, including Florida, Puerto Rico, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, California, Arizona, Hawaii and Alaska. Previously, Kneeley served the Horn and Hardart Company, Dunkin Donuts of America, Inc., and Fotomat Corporation.
 Marks, who will join Luria's in September, will be responsible for Luria's jewelry merchandising. "His experience will help us expand that business and strengthen Luria's dominant position as a premier jewelry retailer."
 Marks previously was vice president of jewelry merchandising at Ross-Simons Jewelers, a Rhode Island retailer and mail-order catalog company. He also held positions at Burdines and Mayor's Jewelers.
 Based in Miami Lakes, L. Luria & Son, Inc. is Florida's leading specialty discount retailer. The company sells a broad line of diamond and gold jewelry, giftware, housewares, home furnishings and consumer electronics in 49 locations throughout Florida.
 -0- 8/18/93
 /CONTACT: Peter Luria, president of L. Luria & Son, Inc., 305-557-9000, ext. 306; or George Owen or Toni Splichal of Hank Meyer Associates, 305-576-5700, for L. Luria & Son, Inc./

CO: L. Luria & Son, Inc. ST: Florida IN: REA SU: PER

AW-RC -- FL005 -- 3892 08/18/93 11:54 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 18, 1993

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