Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 16, 2013 10:14 AM
Despite a firestorm of criticism over a product recall, management shake-ups, and inappropriate comments from its eccentric founder, upscale athletic fashion retailer Lululemon Athletica recently reported increased profits and revenue in the third quarter.
The Vancouver-based company most known for its yoga apparel said profits rose 15 percent to $66.1 million, or 45 cents per share, for the three-month period ending Nov. 3. Revenues climbed to $379.9 million from $316.5 million for the quarter, beating expectations of $374.6 million. But the company's recovery may come to a halt next quarter, with projections for same-store sales coming in flat—collateral from a year of struggle for the company.
Perhaps a holiday blessing for Lululemon will be the pending departure of outspoken, controversial founder Dennis J. Wilson, known as Chip, who will be stepping down as chairman of the board, though he'll remain a member.
Wilson most recently ignited a firestorm after telling Bloomberg TV in November that "some women's bodies just actually don't work," for the company's famed yoga pants, the focus of a March recall that shed a spotlight on the company's flawed supply chain and quality control issues. Wilson's comments irritated an already inflamed sentiment that the company neglected plus-size women—an issue that it has yet to address.Continue reading...
Posted by Alicia Ciccone on November 29, 2013 09:36 AM
Walmart, Target report strong Thanksgiving day traffic.
GM names new chief of China operations.
Gap to enter India retail market with joint venture.
Tiki Barber plans to revitalize Thuzio, his rent-a-pro-athlete business.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn target small businesses.
Google accused of violating Dutch data protection laws.
Microsoft rumors about new potential CEO Alan Mullaly are still swirling.Continue reading...
Posted by Alicia Ciccone on November 28, 2013 08:50 AM
Happy Thanksgiving to our American readers!
American Airlines clears final hurdle in merger with US Airways.
Bitcoin breaks the $1,000 mark.
Gap moves quickly after ad featuring Sikh model is vandalized.
CBC downplays loss of NHL broadcasts.
Facebook testing a 'save for later' feature.
GoldieBlox deletes Beastie Boys commercial as battle with band heats up.
Goldman Sachs bets entrepreneurship project can save Detroit.
HoneyBaked Ham's radio-mobile play aim's to take a bite out of Turkey Day.
HP will replace Verizon in hosting Healthcare.gov website.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 27, 2013 07:02 PM
Thanksgiving is a time to share with loved ones, express gratitude, and take stock of the ad frenzy that is holiday shopping. And with brands turning the clock forward on Black Friday promos, marketing teams are in an all-out race to grab the attention of savings-hungry consumers.
According to research from Shareablee, of the top 25 retailers on Facebook in the first half of November, Walmart accounted for 27 percent of the total shares by fans, followed by QVC with 9 percent, and Macy’s and Nordstrom at 8 percent. On Twitter, BestBuy is dominant with 30 percent of retweets in the category, followed by Nordstrom at 9 percent, Ebay and Target at 8 percent respectively and Walmart at 6 percent.
Target has outpaced all retail competition with six times more Black Friday posts than any other brand, while JCPenney’s one Black Friday post earned the highest level of engagement with over 54,000 likes, comments and shares.
Are you planning on braving the crowds? If so, here's some offers to keep an eye out for:Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 26, 2013 11:35 AM
The blurring of boundaries between Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday may not matter much for long. Discount-hawking consumers, changing brand practices, the inexorable expansion of e-tailing and other factors are changing the whole notion of Black Friday, probably for good.
For sure the days of sacrosanctness for Black Friday and even for Cyber Monday are gone. There will be dwindling stampedes as the doors of Walmart or Macy's or some other chain finally open on the day after Thanksgiving. In part that's because many chains this year are making the jump to open on Thanksgiving night, devaluing the tradition of Black Friday probably forever.
Plus the discounts that retailers used to hold back until Black Friday now are being offered before that once-fateful day, as stubborn consumers, caught in a slow-growth economy since 2008, demand more and earlier promotional activity before they'll part with their hard-earned holiday purse.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 18, 2013 11:12 AM
Gap has put its own spin on holiday cheer with this year's #MakeLove campaign featuring artists and activists who are making a difference in the world.
The retailer has received praise for featuring a diverse group of personalities in its print and digital adverts, from rapper Q-Tip to artist and civil rights icon Harry Belafonte, and music celebebrities including Tony Bennett, Kenna, Cyndi Lauper and Billy Porter. It has especially received attention for featuring the face of Indian-American designer and actor Waris Ahluwalia in all 866 Gap retail stores in the US, online and on social media, in which he wears a traditional Sikh turban.
Ahluwalia has become one of the most prominent Sikh celebrities in America through his House of Waris line and appearances in films such as Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic and Spike Lee’s Inside Man.
Consumers have reacted positively to the inclusive campaign on social media:Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 15, 2013 03:42 PM
Swedish retail giant Hennes & Mauritz is gunning for its “coolly-minimal younger sibling,” COS, to make big a splash in the US market after building up quite a fanbase in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The brand will make its debut in the spring, joining fast-fashion phenom H&M.
But the higher-priced, more artsy brand has no intention of settling for second place. According to H&M's head of business, Marie Honda, the high-fashion brand has the potential to be huge. After testing the waters earlier this month with a NYC pop-up shop at Opening Ceremony, the upscale, minimalist and cosmopolitan COS brand will target US ities "that have an international feel," Honda told Women's Wear Daily.
Come spring 2014, the brand plans to launch US e-commerce and open its first store in April in NYC's Soho neighborhood.
It’s a strategic shift for H&M, which launched in the US market as a trendy and cheaper alternative to Gap, Zara and Forever 21, and for whom American stores deliver the most revenue after Germany.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on November 11, 2013 07:22 PM
Bigger than Cyber Monday (which notched up US $1.46 billion in sales last November) and bigger than China's National Day "Golden Week," China's Singles Day ("光棍节") also known as "1111" as it falls on 11/11, has become the the biggest online shopping day of the year—worldwide. This year's event was expected to break all previous records, and that it swiftly did.
In the first twenty minutes of the day's online sales going live, China's dominant commerce site, Taobao, recorded US$500 million in sales. By 10:00 am, Taobao had crossed US$2.46 billion in sales. By 1:00 pm, the sales frenzy passed last year's tally. By the end of the day, owner Alibaba (China's equivalent of Amazon) crowed that its Taobao and Tmall online shopping hubs recorded 35 billion yuan or RMB, or a whopping US$5.75 billion.
Not bad for a holiday that didn't even exist 25 years ago.Continue reading...