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On Thursday, Build-A-Bear Workshop (NYSE: BBW ) announced that Maxine Clark, its founder and Chief Executive Bear (yes, seriously), intends to give up her chair. Rumors that the chair in question was either too hard, or too soft, could not be confirmed by press time.
What is known is that Ms. Clark intends to keep her seat on the company's board of directors, and that she will also remain "CEB" until a suitable replacement has been found.
In unrelated news, Build-A-Bear pre-announced its Q4 sales yesterday, advising that comparable store sales declined 1.7% in comparison to last year's Q4. U.S. comps were up 1.5%, but were more than offset by a 11.4% decline in Europe.
Additionally, in a statement, Build-a-Bear reiterated its plan to close between 50 and 60 of its stores over the next two years, and to remodel 40 to 50 more, and said it continues to target an "optimal store base" of 225 to 250 stores.
Build-A-Bear will issue complete Q4 and full-year fiscal 2012 earnings on February 14, 2013.