Friday, May 31, 2019

Gap Brand, Old Navy Post Weakest Sales in Three Years

The Wall Street Journal
Comparable sales slipped at Old Navy for the first time in three years and the Gap brand posted its biggest decline since 2016, a weak showing for both chains ahead of a planned breakup.

Inc. Chief Executive Art Peck cited a litany of reasons for the disappointing results, including poor weather, slower traffic for stores, lower tax refunds for consumers and a decision to delay some marketing until later in the year.. . . more

Red Robin to close restaurants as part of turnaround plan

Yahoo Finance
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (Nasdaq: RRGB), after suffering through another disappointing quarter to begin 2019, will close 10 under-performing stores today — just one step the chain will take in the near future to attempt to return to sustainable, profitable growth after recording its fifth straight quarter of declining same-store sales.

Chief Financial Officer Lynn Schweinfurth did not specify which of the full-service restaurant chain's locations will shutter but noted that seven of them are based within enclosed malls — a segment of the company's business that is hurting even more than other locations.. . . more

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Preview: KeyPoint Report for Eastern MA 2019

KeyPoint Partners
The 2019 KeyPoint Report for Eastern Massachusetts/Greater Boston, based on our proprietary GRIID™ retail database, is in production and should be available by the end of June. While you’re waiting, here’s a preview - but please consider these results preliminary and subject to change:

Inventory and Vacancy: Total inventory in Eastern Massachusetts experienced a modest decline this year to 196.0 million square feet, a drop of 0.2%, caused largely by demolitions and repurposing of space to non-retail use. Following a substantial rise in the vacancy rate last year to 9.5%, it was encouraging to see the region show a nominal decline to 9.4% this year. . . . more

'Old Sears' and 'new Sears' fighting in court again

Retail Dive
The two parties involved in the sale of the salvaged remains of Sears Holdings' operations are at war in bankruptcy court, accusing each other of breaching the sale agreement signed earlier this year. Last week, the former holding company for Sears stores alleged in court papers that the new Sears, comprising of more than 400 remaining stores, failed to take on tens of millions of dollars in liabilities and to pay cash owed to it under the sale contract, among other alleged breaches.

The new Sears, dubbed Transform Holdco – a subsidiary of ESL Investments, the hedge fund run by former Sears Holdings CEO Eddie Lampert – has filed its own complaint against the old Sears company, alleging that it failed to deliver inventory, receivables, property and other assets, along with other contract violations. . . . more

Madewell boosts J.Crew Q1 sales

Chain Store Age
Overall J.Crew Group Inc.’s first-quarter revenues received a lift from the Madewell brand, although profits remained in the red.

Breaking down results by brand, the J.Crew brand did not fare as well as the company as a whole. Revenue fell 4% to $376.1 million from $391.9 million. Same-store sales declined 1%, an improvement from the 6% decrease reported in the first quarter of fiscal 2018.

However, performance of the Madewell brand was a bright spot in the first quarter. Madewell’s revenue rose 15% to $132.9 million from $115.8 million. Same-store sales increased 10%, following an increase of 31% in the first quarter of the prior year.. . . more

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Lands' End to take final steps away from Sears

Retail Dive
Lands' End is approaching its final steps away from Sears stores.

Lands' End reported that it exited 125 Sears locations by the end of the fourth quarter and has just 40 Sears locations.

However, Lands' End has been ramping up its own stores since the spinoff. The retailer currently operates 16 U.S. stores and has plans to open 10 to 15 additional locations by the end of the year. This aligns with Lands' End's plan to open 40 to 60 locations over the next several years.. . . more

Abercrombie & Fitch Sinks Following Same-Store Sales Miss

The Street
Shares of Abercrombie & Fitch were sinking sharply Wednesday after the apparel retailer reported soft first-quarter same-store sales.

Abercrombie & Fitch reported a 1% increase in same-store sales, below analysts' average estimate of 1.33%, according to Refinitiv IBES.

The company's Abercrombie brand reported a 1% decline in revenue to $305.5 million while its Hollister brand increased sales 1% to $428.45 million. . . . more

Sarah Jessica Parker brand expanding in brick-and-mortar

Chain Store Age
SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker, the growing contemporary brand owned by Parker and George Malkemus III, will open its first Midwest location, at Mall of America. Scheduled to open this summer, the 1,300 -sq.-ft. store will feature the brand’s iconic line of Italian-handcrafted footwear and accessories and its signature black dress.

The first SJP store opened in December 2016, at the MGM National Harbor in Maryland. It has since added locations in Manhattan, Las Vegas, Houston, Dubai and Abu Dhabi.. . . more

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Most Popular Shopping Malls In America, 2019

CEO World
The USA is one of those progressing countries which has the best of everything- including shopping. The hottest fashion trends, brand sensations, and attractive deals start from here. In fact, the consumerism, evolution of shopping mall culture began from this country. Malls are exciting to shop because of the convenience and availability of multiple brands in one place.

They are also ideal destinations for families to have an ideal day out with fun, good shopping, and great food! Here are some of the greatest shopping malls in the USA which cannot be missed:. . . more

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Candytopia proves a sweet draw for malls

Chain Store Age
“What if an eccentric chocolatier and a daredevil pop star had a whirlwind romance, got married while skydiving, and had a glamorous, glittering love child who grew up to rule a small nation?”

That’s the promo copy for Candytopia, an experiential retail traveling show created by John Goodman, former Wet Seal CEO and chief of apparel and home at Sears. His company sets up this immersive, Wonka-esque experience in spaces ranging from 14,000 sq. ft. to 25,000 sq. ft. at malls in major markets for runs of four to five months. Admission prices range up to $40 for adults and $30 for kids. . . . more

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Online socially-minded native in deal with Simon to open stores

Chain Store Age
An online start-up brand founded by the former CEO of Gymboree is taking on brick-and-mortar.

Simon announced that Hope & Henry will open more than 15 stores at Simon centers throughout the United States by the end of third quarter 2019. The brand made its brick-and-mortar debut in 2018, in Simon’s turnkey retail space, The Edit@ Roosevelt Field at Roosevelt Field mall in Garden City, New York. The Edit is designed to showcase a curated selection of new and emerging brands on a rotating basis.. . . more

‘We had executional misses’ — Nordstrom reports decline in profits and sales

The Seattle Times
Barely a day after confirming the opening date for its massive new flagship store in New York City, Nordstrom reported a sharp drop in first-quarter profits and faltering sales, thanks to continued softness in physical retail and a bungled update to its loyalty program.

Net earnings for the first quarter of fiscal 2019 were $37 million, a 57% decline from the same period last year. The Seattle-based retailer’s downbeat results echoed similarly poor first-quarter numbers for J.C. Penney and Kohl’s, which also reported Tuesday.. . . more

US department store slowdown intensifies retail concerns

Boston Business Journal
Two of the biggest US department stores, Kohl’s and JC Penney, intensified concerns over the health of bricks and mortar retailing on Tuesday as falling sales sent their share prices tumbling.

Quarterly revenues fell short of forecasts at both companies, which between them operate almost 2,000 stores and employ about 225,000 people. By midday in New York, Kohl’s stock was down 11 per cent and JC Penney 9 per cent.. . . more

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

When anchors go away

Chain Store Age
A convenient, albeit misleading headline has gained great currency in the retail business — this being that physical retail is disappearing at a rapid rate as shoppers and sales migrate online, creating a real estate landscape rich in opportunity for those (few) retailers who do still actually want to open brick-and-mortar stores.

As is usually the case, the full picture is rather more complicated and nuanced. Certainly, physical retail is under tremendous pressure from online in particular, and some retailers are responding to competitive pressures and changing shopper behaviors by closing stores and rationalizing their networks — sometimes very severely. Among the most prominent in this respect is the department store sector, J.C. Penney and Sears in particular. . . . more

J.C. Penney CEO Jill Soltau: 'there's no silver bullet' and turnaround to take time

The Dallas Morning News
J.C. Penney began a pivotal year under new management with a bigger sales decline and wider loss than analysts expected, but chief executive officer Jill Soltau said the Plano-based department store has "made solid progress acting swiftly, but thoughtfully."

The transformation of 117-year-old Penney, "will take time," she said on a conference call Tuesday morning to review results. Saying she's not guiding on future performance, but it's been her experience that in a turnaround where many aspects go into "righting the ship, things can get worse before they get better." . . . more

Monday, May 20, 2019

Sears' Seven Decades of Self-Destruction

The kindest media attention Sears has attracted in years arrived in April, when the company announced it was opening three small stores. “The start of a new Sears era? The retailer announces openings, not closings,” read USA Today’s hopeful headline, which echoed others nationwide.

But viewed through a longer lens, the coverage was more pathetic than upbeat. This is what now passes for good news at the onetime colossus of global retailing: three stores, one of them in Alaska, each smaller than owner Eddie Lampert’s house, offering a somewhat puzzling product line consisting mostly of appliances and mattresses. . . . more

Friday, May 17, 2019

Children's Place to close up to 45 stores in 2019, but also opening new stores

The Children's Place is opening and closing stores in 2019.

As part of a multiyear plan to close 300 stores by 2020, the New Jersey-based retailer announced this week it plans on closing another 40 to 45 stores in 2019.

But at the same time, the company is looking to grow and fill the void left by former rival Gymboree. The Children's Place purchased the rights to the Gymboree and Crazy 8 brands for $76 million in March.. . . more

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Macy's Smashes Q1 Earnings, Same Store Sales Estimates; Confirms 2019 Guidance
Macy's Inc. posted stronger-than-expected first quarter earnings Wednesday, and reaffirmed its full-year guidance, as the struggling retailer notched a surprise uptick in same-store sales growth and saw solid gains from its push to online revenues.

Macy's said earnings for the three months ending in March came in at 44 cents per share, down 8.3% from the same period last year but 11 cents ahead of the Street consensus forecast. Group revenues, Macy's said, slipped to $5.504 billion and were just shy of analysts' estimates, but same-store sales rose 0.7% thanks in part to the group's Growth50 turnaround strategy.. . . more

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Behind the Turnaround at Children’s Place

The Wall Street Journal
Children’s Place Inc. has consolidated its position as the leading specialty chain for children’s clothing—a long way from where the company stood when Jane Elfers took over as CEO in 2010.

In March, it agreed to acquire the assets and intellectual property of rival chains Gymboree and Crazy 8, both owned by Gymboree Group Inc., which liquidated the stores after a second foray into bankruptcy protection earlier this year.. . . more

Union representing Macy’s workers votes to authorize strike

Boston Business Journal
A strike is looming at Macy’s stores in parts of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

After four months of contract negotiations, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1445 voted Sunday to authorize a strike if necessary. The union represents more than 1,000 Macy’s employees in Boston, Braintree, Natick, Peabody and Warwick, Rhode Island.. . . more

Monday, May 13, 2019

Chico's Weighs Buyout While Trying to Move Beyond the Mall

Malaise in the shopping mall is certainly no secret, with thousands of stores shutting and some familiar names disappearing. Struggling women’s apparel merchant Chico’s FAS Inc. now has a potential lifeline -- which it may throw back.

The retailer said Friday it would review an unsolicited buyout bid from Sycamore Partners, the owner of office supply giant Staples Inc. and department-store chain Belk, noting that it had previously rejected a higher offer from the private equity company.. . . more

Is it lights out for Lord & Taylor?

Retail Dive
A year after rumors surfaced that HBC was looking into selling Lord & Taylor, the company made it official, saying last week that a sale is among the strategic options it’s now pursuing for its small, struggling department store banner.

It’s easy to find the rationale: Comps at DSG, (the HBC business that comprises Lord & Taylor​ plus the Canadian Hudson's Bay department store chain and now-shuttered Home Outfitters) fell 5.2%, in the company’s most recent quarter. Specifically, Lord & Taylor sales continued to decline year-over-year, the company also said last month. . . . more

Friday, May 10, 2019

Private equity Sycamore says Chico's declined to engage on buyout offer

Yahoo Finance
Sycamore Partners LP said on Friday struggling women's apparel retailer Chico's FAS Inc has declined to engage with the private equity firm on its cash offer to buy the company for $407.8 million.

In an SEC filing, Sycamore disclosed a 6.6% stake in the company, making it the fourth largest shareholder in Chico's. The private equity had offered about $3.50 per Chico's share, a discount of 5.4% to the company's Thursday close.. . . more

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Warby Parker proves you can sell quality glasses at more-affordable prices

LA Times
The four co-founders of Warby Parker were students at Penn’s Wharton School when they realized there was a need for an eyewear company that could deliver high quality and classic style at reasonable prices.

They launched Warby in 2010. Nearly a decade later, the privately held company is worth over a billion dollars. . . . more

Sears reveals the symbolism behind its new logo

Business Insider
Sears has rebranded and adopted a new slogan and logo.

The department-store chain rolled out the new slogan "making moments matter" in a video posted to Facebook on April 28, along with a logo designed to be a combination of a house and a heart.. . . more

Interactive Children’s Mini-City KidZania Entering U.S. and Taking Over Department Store Spaces

KidZania, an indoor, interactive mini “city” run by kids that has locations around the world, is about to enter the U.S. market by taking large blocks of space in regional malls.

“Most of the real estate that we’re looking at is [former] multi-level department stores,” and then KidZania will figure out how to repurpose the space, says Gregory Knoop, chief development officer, North America, for KidZania USA.. . . more

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Pandora’s U.S. Sales Fall 12 Percent, Will Close 50 Stores

Pandora’s sales fell sharply in the United States and elsewhere during the first quarter of 2019, as the company reduced promotions and experimented with new products.

Pandora also announced plans to close 50 of its concept stores across the world and is opening fewer stores: It opened eight in the first quarter, compared to 39 the year before.. . . more

Belk lays its 130-year legacy on the line

Retail Dive
North Carolina-based department store chain Belk enjoys icon status in the Southern states where it's mostly thrived for over 130 years. For a brand transformation announced on Wednesday, however, the company is turning to the New York office of advertising agency Mcgarrybowen, which is much closer to the Manhattan headquarters of its private equity owner Sycamore Partners than to its own in Charlotte.

It's the latest consequence of the Belk family's sale of the business in 2015 for $3 billion, a steep price and a savvy move, according to many observers at the time, in light of the challenges faced by retailers, especially department stores. . . . more

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Macy's most visited website for apparel

Retail Dive
Macy's, J.C. Penney and Nordstrom held the top three spots for general apparel in average monthly traffic from July 2017 to June 2018, according to a recent SimilarWeb Retail Trend report emailed to Retail Dive.

Digitally native brands Zulily, Zappos and Poshmark followed closely behind in the fourth through sixth spots among stores with the top web traffic. . . . more

Monday, May 6, 2019

HBC to Review Strategic Alternatives for Lord & Taylor

Financial Post
HBC today announced it is pursuing strategic alternatives for the Lord + Taylor operating business, including a possible sale or merger, as part of its strategy to focus on its greatest opportunities.

“This review of strategic alternatives for Lord + Taylor is another example of how we are exploring options to position HBC for long-term success,” said Helena Foulkes, HBC’s Chief Executive Officer. . . . more

Friday, May 3, 2019

Francesca's to close at least 20 stores this year amid sales plunge

Retail Dive
Francesca’s on Friday said it will shutter at least 20 stores this year and pause remodels until the company stabilizes its financial situation. The company swung to a net loss of $21.3 million in the fourth quarter from the prior year’s net income of $3.7 million, the company also said.

The apparel retailer’s net sales fell 14% to $119.3 million from $138.5 million in the year-ago quarter, as comparable sales also fell 14%, according to a company press release.
. . . more

Silver City Galleria in Taunton is in foreclosure

SouthCoast Today
The Silver City Galleria mall is going up for auction.

Anyone with an initial deposit amount of $150,000 who wants to bid on the East Taunton shopping center can do so at 10 a.m. on Friday, May 17. 

The foreclosure action filed by Branch Banking and Trust Company of North Carolina is tied to a 2014 mortgage loan issued in the amount of $20.9 million. . . . . more

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Regional Mall Owners Focus on Adaptive Reuse and Smaller, More Nimble Tenants

Malls are taking a hit with the loss of anchor department stores like Sears, J.C. Penney, Bon-Ton, Carson’s and Macy, not to mention in-line tenants.

So far this year, U.S. retailers have announced they will close 6,105 stores, while opening 2,658 in 2019, according to global market research firm Coresight Research. This compares to 5,864 closures and 3,239 openings for all of 2018.

In the wake of more than two dozen Sears closures, the regional mall vacancy rate ticked up 30 basis points to 9.3 percent in the first quarter of 2019, reported real estate research firm Reis Inc. However, growth in average rents was flat.. . . more

Nordstrom to Add Two Mini Stores in Its New York Expansion

The New York Times
Nordstrom waited decades to expand in Manhattan, but now it’s making up for lost time. It introduced its men’s store last year and is opening a seven-story flagship store this fall.

And the upscale department-store chain has more up its cuffed sleeves. In September, it will open two small Nordstrom outposts in New York, in the West Village and on the Upper East Side, as part of its new Nordstrom Local chain, the retailer announced Wednesday.. . . more

The new mall tenant is your office

Boston Business Journal
The redevelopment of Westside Pavilion, a dying mall in Los Angeles, is one of the latest examples of a nationwide trend in commercial real estate: the conversion of malls into office space. Offices are less risky than retailers, and in some cases they can generate foot traffic for the mall’s remaining stores and restaurants.

The biggest beneficiaries of the conversions are coworking enterprises, like WeWork, which provide shared work spaces primarily to entrepreneurs, freelancers and startups. The highest concentration of coworking spaces in retail nationally is in malls, according to an August study by the global property company Jones Lang LaSalle. The same study predicted that coworking space in retail in general would grow at an annual rate of 25% through 2023.. . . more