Design

Manchester, England Designed by the London office of RTKL for Birmingham, U.K.-based Richardson Developments, The Printworks was created to be Europe's premier urban entertainment district. Open 24 hours a day, the 600,000-sq.-ft. project was 100% leased before opening its doors in 2000.

Formerly the site of Daily Mirror printworks, The Printworks is a collection of buildings each designed individually with some façades 80-ft. high that combine to create a new Manchester Street. Three years in the making, the center features the latest in entertainment technology. Inside, a “living ceiling” features a projection screen nearly 91 ft. by 52 ft. that shows images of fireworks, falling leaves, hot air balloons, etc. The tenant lineup includes Books etc.; phones4you; thefilmsworks (including a 400-seat IMAX theater); Cromwells Madhouse; Norwegian Blue; Old Orleans; Henry J. Beans; Witherspoon's; Haagan-Dazs; and BB's Muffins and Cakes.

Technology

Taiwan PanelTech Hai-Sei and Netkey recently formed an alliance. The former, a subsidiary of Huan Hsin Holding Ltd., is one of the largest manufacturers of computer hardware in Asia. Having developed a strong presence in Taipei, Singapore, Hong Kong and Greater China, PanelTech Hai-Sei gives NetKey a strategic advantage to enter the Asian market. The latter is a Chicago-based provider of innovative and scalable software products and services for self-service devices including kiosks, web-enabled ATMs and managed PCs. Kiosk technology helps consumers quickly obtain information they need to make purchase decisions, such as locating products, checking product availability, accessing product information and receiving relevant promotions, using web-based technology, says Alex Richardson, CEO of Netkey.

Business

Fort Worth, Texas Carter & Burgess continues to expand its international entertainment design capabilities with the addition of Chris Miles and Jeffrey Blydenburgh as design director and development director respectively. Before joining Carter & Burgess, the duo were founding principals of HOK Studio E and URS Entertainment Services. With 65 years of combined experience, some of their projects include Heron City Las Rozas in Madrid, Spain; Can Drago in Barcelona, Spain; and Kungens Kurva in Stockholm, Sweden. As we continue to expand the depth of our facilities design services, we see the global leisure destination market as a key area of focus, says Jim Congdon, P.E., senior VP and head of the firm's facilities design practice.

Carter & Burgess is a full-service firm offering consulting services to the entertainment, retail, communication, transportation, land development and public works industries.

Acquisition

Dsseldorf, Germany London-based Kingfisher plc recently acquired Yagma AG, an online consumer electronics retailer. The Dsseldorf, Germany-based Internet company sold for a nominal cash fee. Yagma will now provide Kingfisher's German, electrical retail business, ProMarkt, with the ability to conduct online transactions, as reported by BridgeNews.

Expansion

Tokyo Supermarket chain giant Jusco surpassed its locally based competitor Ito-Yokado as Japan's most profitable retailer. The company's pre-tax profit totaled $200 million, 3 billion more yen (more than $24 million) than Ito-Yokado's profit margin.

In related news, being No. 2 in Japan hasn't slowed Ito-Yokado down a bit. The company is planning to open additional stores since the doubling of sales in two of its locations Chengdu, Japan, and Beijing, according to just-food.com. In fact, a five-story supermarket is online for September in northern Beijing and a similar store is slated to open in 2003. Additional smaller sites also are being considered, as reported by Retail NewsBeat.

Ito-Yokado Co. operates superstores, convenience stores, restaurants, supermarkets, department stores, specialty shops and discount chains.