Industry Eye: Catalogers' Updates, People on the Move and More
Lane Bryant: The women’s plus-size specialty apparel retailer has launched a new fashion retail catalog. The catalog was mailed to 3 million existing customers beginning in March. Lane Bryant, which isn’t connected with the former Lane Bryant catalog that Redcats USA (and before that, Brylane) used to operate, also unveiled a new toll-free number to handle orders and customer service inquiries, joining its retail stores and e-commerce site. The new catalog conveys a fashion-inspired look with a new attitude and bright colors. Sears: The retailer has acquired Delver Ltd., an Israel-based search engine platform provider. The move continues Sears’ push into online services following its corporate restructuring a year ago. While terms of the deal weren’t announced, Sears is thought to have gotten a good deal as the Israeli startup company was on the verge of shutting down after failing to raise $6 million (U.S.) in capital.
Lenox Group: The china, tabletop and giftware marketer’s acquisition by the private investment firm Clarion Capital Partners has been completed. The “New Lenox,” which includes the Lenox, Dansk, Gorham and Department 56 brands, will now operate outside of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Peter Cameron, former Waterford Wedgwood and All-Clad Metalcrafters CEO, will assume the position of chairman and CEO of New Lenox.
Macy’s: The retailer reported that overall sales for February decreased 9.3 percent compared with the prior February’s sales. A bright spot for the company was its e-commerce sales, which combine Macys.com and Bloomingdales.com; they surged 16.2 percent in February.
J.C. Penney: Despite beating company forecasts, the retailer’s February sales still fell 7.2 percent from the previous year. Comparable store sales dropped 8.8 percent in the month.
Coldwater Creek: The struggles for the catalog/multichannel retailer of women’s apparel, gifts, jewelry and accessories continued in the fourth quarter, as total sales decreased $63.2 million. Direct sales were part of the problem, finishing the quarter down $35.8 million, while comparable store sales declined 21.4 percent.