Friday, August 30, 2019

Check out Wayfair’s first permanent store

Chain Store Age
Wayfair continues its foray into brick-and-mortar with the opening of its first permanent, full-price store.

The online home furnishings giant opened a 3,400-sq.-ft. location at Natick Mall, in Natick., Mass. Wayfair previously operated a pop-up shop at the Natick Mall during the 2018 holiday season along with one at the Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey. . . . more

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Tiffany Q2 earnings top Street but sales miss amid Hong Kong protests

Chain Store Age
Tiffany & Co. reported earnings that easily topped analysts’ expectations but its sales fell short amid protests in Hong Kong and a decline in tourist spending in the U.S.

Sales fell to $1.05 billion from $1.08 billion, missing Street estimates of $1.06 billion. Global same-store sales decreased 4%. Same-store U.S. sales fell 4%. Tiffany said it had “strong growth” in mainland China but “softness” in Hong Kong.. . . more

Regis selling rest of company-owned salons

StarTribune
Regis Corp. plans to sell more than 3,100 salons in its transition to a full franchise business model.

In its last fiscal year, the Edina-based company has sold 767 salons to franchisees, making more than half its 7,145 salons franchises. It said Tuesday, as it released fourth quarter results, that it will sell almost all of the rest of the corporate-owned stores.. . . more

Gap to keep name after Old Navy spin-off

FOX Business
Gap Inc announced on Wednesday that it will keep its iconic name following the planned spin-off of its Old Navy brand Opens a New Window. .

The new public company, currently being called NewCo, will have the Gap Inc. name.

The new Gap Inc. will contain a portfolio of brands, including Gap, Banana Republic, Athleta, Intermix, Janie and Jack, and Hill City.. . . more

Greater Hartford, CT Report Preview

KeyPoint Partners
With the releases of the KeyPoint Reports on Eastern Massachusetts/Greater Boston and Southern New Hampshire behind us, it’s time to move on to the report for Greater Hartford, Connecticut, based on our proprietary GRIID™ retail database. As with the other reports, our modus operandi is to share some of the regional highlights while the complete version is still “baking.” In Greater Hartford, the 2019 retail market was a relatively stable one.. . . more

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Forever 21 reportedly preparing potential bankruptcy filing

CNBC
Apparel retailer Forever 21 is preparing to potentially file for bankruptcy, Bloomberg reported Wednesday afternoon, citing people familiar with its plans.

The retailer has been exploring restructuring options to shore up its liquidity as it struggles with its business, CNBC previously reported. Those efforts though, have stalled, and the company’s focus has instead shifted to raising a so-called debtor-in-possession loan to fund a potential bankruptcy, Bloomberg reported. The newswire cautioned it is still possible it will be able to restructure its debt without filing for bankruptcy.. . . more

Lord & Taylor sold

Chain Store Age
The nation’s oldest department store company is being acquired by an apparel rental service that was founded some seven years ago.

Hudson’s Bay Company said it will sell Lord & Taylor to Le Tote for $100 million. The Canadian department store giant will be paid C$99.5 million (US$75 million) in cash after the deal closes and a secured promissory note of C$33.2 million (US$25 million) payable in cash after two years. In addition, Hudson’s Bay will receive an equity stake in Le Tote, two seats on its board and certain rights as a minority shareholder.. . . more

Simon Property Group Wants to Be More Than Just a Mall Operator

The Motley Fool
The retail apocalypse is in full force. Last year, Sears Holdings filed for bankruptcy and is liquidating stores. Earlier this year, Dressbarn (owned by Ascena Retail Group) made the decision to close all its stores. And these are just two examples of the dozens of struggling retailers that have been closing thousands of stores or are on the brink of insolvency.

A major loser in all of this (other than the individual retailers) are the real estate companies owed rent and facing higher vacancy rates in the malls they operate. Among them is Simon Property Group, a real estate investment trust (REIT) that operates 235 shopping centers around the world. While the company's business is holding up well, Simon is redeveloping much of its property to diversify its portfolio. . . . more

Chico’s swings to Q2 loss; White House Black Market falls but Soma shines

Chain Store Age
Chico’s FAS’s continued to struggle in the second quarter amid plunging sales at White House | Black Market and a better-than-expected performance by its lingerie brand, Soma.

Revenue fell 6.7% to $508.4 million, below the $513.0 million analysts had estimated. The decrease was driven by a total same-store sales decline of 6.1%, more than the Street expected, as well as the impact of 53 net store closures since last year’s second quarter, the company said.

By brand, same-store sales fell 16.1% at White House Black Market and 5.6% at Chico’s. Same-store sales rose 10.9% at Soma. . . . more

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

CBRE props up pop-ups with new hire

CSA
For eight years, Nathan Schnefke handled specialty leasing for the 39 GGP malls that got spun off as Rouse Properties.

This week, he takes his talents to CBRE. Schnefke joins a CBRE mall and large format retail practice that has dramatically expanded the number of properties it counts as clients in the past three years...more

Boston Gaining On New York, San Francisco As Foreign Investors’ Market Of Choice

Bisnow
While the largest destinations for cross-border capital into the U.S. have lost momentum in recent years, Boston is gaining ground. . . more

Target on track to remodel 1,000 stores by end of 2020

CSA
Target Corp. has passed two big store milestones.

The discounter recently cut the ribbon on its 100th small-format store, and also surpassed its 500th store remodel. And it’s not done yet: Target said it’s on track to remodel 1,000 stores by the end of 2020. . . . more

Why more retailers who own their stores are doing sale-leasebacks

CSA
Is the chain you work for, like so many retail chains today, looking to lift net earnings in a challenging environment?

One thing to consider heavily if yours is a chain that owns a lot of its own properties is the sale-leaseback. A sale-leaseback is exactly what it sounds like: You sell your property, but you immediately lease it from the buyer so you can continue to operate your business. Why would you sell a property you still need to use? Generally speaking, you either want to get cash back out of your investment, possibly to put back into your business, or you want to end the headache that sometimes comes with owning the property where your business is located. . . . more

Monday, August 26, 2019

Forever 21 hires disposition company

Chain Store Age
The trendy mall teen fashion shop whose trendiness appears on the wane has hired RCS Real Estate Advisors to help it re-evaluate its 815-store portfolio.

Forever 21, a favorite of teen girls for most of the last decade, is suffering from a severe drop in traffic and is looking at closing under-performing locations and filing for bankruptcy.. . . more

Barneys exec explains why it's keeping the Madison Avenue flagship

Retail Dive
Just a few weeks after Barneys New York filed for bankruptcy, Chief Digital and Technology Officer and Executive Vice President Katherine Bahamonde Monasebian discussed some of the problems that forced the company into that position in the first place.

"Department stores used to be, in their heyday, the emporium. They were the center of the community. They were the place you went to find what you needed, perfectly curated. There was no retail without department stores," Monasebian said during a panel at the eTail East conference this week, noting that the model has had to evolve in a period of change. . . . more

Friday, August 23, 2019

Foot Locker goes off track again in Q2

Chain Store Age
Foot Locker turned in a disappointing second-quarter performance with earnings and sales that missed expectations.

Sales fell 0.4% to $1.77 billion, below analysts’ estimates of $1.82 billion. Same-store sales edged up 0.8%, also below estimates. . . . more

Gap same-store sales disappoint as Old Navy struggles

Yahoo Finance
Gap Inc posted quarterly same-store sales that fell short of analysts' estimates on Thursday, as Old Navy suffered its worst comparable sales figures in three years ahead of a planned spin-off of the brand.

Old Navy, which offers more affordable clothing and accessories, has been a bright spot for the company in the past. But quarterly same-store sales fell 5%, much worse than the 1.11% decline Wall Street expected, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. . . . more

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Apparel is out of fashion

Retail Dive
Considering the number of apparel retailers on the ground and online, it would appear to be a winning category. But broad sales trends are not in the sector's favor.

Several apparel retailers are struggling. Ascena is regrouping as sales plummet, unloading its discount banners entirely. L Brands is propped up by its personal care brand Bath & Body Works as Victoria's Secret loses share. J. Crew is in disarray, hobbled by debt and putting its hopes into its much smaller Madewell brand.. . . more

L Brands second-quarter profit drops sharply as Victoria’s Secret lags

The Columbus Dispatch
L Brands said Wednesday that its second-quarter profit tumbled from the same period in 2018, dragged down by a one-time charge and continued struggles at Victoria’s Secret.

Revenue fell to $2.9 billion during the quarter from $3 billion in the same period in 2018.

The company said comparable store sales, an indicator of a retailer’s strength, fell 6% at Victoria’s Secret but rose 8% at Bath & Body Works. Overall, comparable store sales fell 1%.. . . more

Nordstrom beats profit estimates as it clears inventory faster and sells more online

Yahoo Finance
Upscale U.S. retailer Nordstrom Inc reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday as it said it had cut costs and cleared more inventory, sending its shares up 10% in extended trading.

The Seattle-based company, which sells everything from apparel and footwear to home decor, said digital sales rose 4% for the second quarter ended Aug. 3, although weaker sales at both its full-price department stores and off-price Nordstrom Rack stores dragged total revenue down 5% to $3.87 billion. . . . more

Retail earnings show big box, off-price brands are winning while mall stores struggle

The Dallas Morning News
The divide between retail winners and losers is widening.

That became even more evident Wednesday with the latest batch of earnings reports: Big-box stores and off-price retailers have been responding faster to shoppers' increasing shift online with expanded deliveries and better merchandise. But many mall-based clothing chains and department stores continue to suffer weak sales as they struggle to lure shoppers.. . . more

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Resale clothing company thredUP gets $175 million in funding

Reuters
Online resale store thredUP said on Wednesday it received $175 million in funding which it will use to expand its platform to offer resale clothing services to retailers.

Last week, the department store chains J.C. Penney Company Inc and Macy’s Inc. announced partnerships with San Francisco-based thredUP intended to lure younger, more environmentally conscious shoppers into stores and to provide retailers fresh inventory of secondhand clothing and accessories. . . . more

Urban Outfitters in mixed Q2; Free People continues to shine

Chain Store Age
Urban Outfitters’ second-quarter earnings topped analysts’ estimates but its revenue fell short amid comp declines at its namesake and Anthropologie divisions.

Total net sales decreased 3% to $962 million, short of Street expectations of $982 million. Same-store sales also dropped 3%. By brand, comparable sales increased 6% at Free People and decreased 3% at the Anthropologie Group and 5% at Urban Outfitters. Wholesale segment net sales decreased 8%.. . . more

See inside Wayfair's first full-service retail home store

bisnow.com
Boston-based online furniture retailer Wayfair will open its first full-service retail store at the Natick Mall on Wednesday, Aug. 21.

The Natick store will feature hundreds of items in its inventory that will be available for in-store purchase. It will also allow shoppers to use digital interfaces to plan out the layout of rooms in their home and customize the upholstery of furniture to match their needs, according to a statement issued by the company.. . . more

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Department stores may be having a bad ‘Kodak moment,’ one trader warns

CNBC
Big retailers are getting in the check-out line to release earnings this week.

Home Depot, Kohl’s, Nordstrom, Target and some other big retail names will be reporting results this week. Those reports have a tinge of uncertainty following a rough earnings miss by Macy’s and a big beat by Walmart.. . . more

Monday, August 19, 2019

Banana Republic hops on board the latest retail trend

Chain Store Age
Banana Republic has joined the growing ranks of retail companies that are letting consumers rent apparel.

Banana Republic on Friday said it will launch an online subscription rental service for women at the end of September, with the goal of adding men’s apparel at a later date. Called “Style Passport,” the service will allow customers to rent three items for the monthly fee of $85, with the option to purchase any piece. The plan includes free priority shipping, unlimited exchanges and returns, and complimentary laundering services.. . . more

Nordstrom Did So Much Right, but It’s Still in Trouble

The Wall Street Journal
Nordstrom Inc. invested heavily in e-commerce, didn’t open too many cavernous stores and has been quick to experiment with new types of shopping formats, including stores that don’t carry any clothes.

Yet, it’s suffering the same fate as department stores that innovated less, with year-over-year sales and profits expected to fall for the second consecutive quarter when it reports results on Wednesday. Its stock is the second-worst performing in the S&P 500 retail index behind shares of Macy’s Inc., falling 52% over the past 12 months through Friday’s close. During that period, the index was roughly flat. . . . more

Could Eminent Domain Be The Zombie Mall Slayer?

bisnow.com
After 45 years in business, and recent years of struggle, the Swansea Mall in the town of Swansea, Massachusetts, closed its doors for good in April.

A new owner is now trying to breathe life into the mall, but is blocked from being able to do much given a set of restrictive covenants Walmart imposed on the property in 2012 under previous ownership. Now, Swansea’s top elected officials are aiming to eliminate those restrictions by advocating the use of a power unique to governments, one that more and more municipalities around the country are looking to use: eminent domain. . . . more

Friday, August 16, 2019

Mall-based candy retailer files for bankruptcy; locked out of some stores

Chain Store Age
Things are not so sweet these days for Lolli & Pops.

Declining mall traffic and overexpansion have caught up with the San Francisco-based retailer, with parent company Mishti Holdings LLC filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on August 13. Prior to the filing, the company closed its 10 stores operating under the Candyopolis banner. (Lolli & Pops’s e-commerce site was shut down earlier this year.). . . more

Dillard’s Q2 loss widens; to close three stores

Chain Store Age
Department stores woes continued as Dillard’s posted a much wider second-quarter loss than expected.

The department store retailer reported a net loss of $40.7 million for the quarter ended Aug.3, compared with a loss of $2.9 million in the year-ago period.

Revenue fell to $1.427 billion from $1.468 billion in the year-ago period. Same-store sales fell 2%.. . . more

PREIT’s Joe Coradino Weighs in on the State of Regional Malls

NREI
It’s extremely clear that shoppers’ preferences are changing and those retailers and malls that can’t adapt are treading water or worse.

U.S. regional malls have struggled as anchor department stores like Sears, J.C. Penney and Macy’s have shuttered locations. However, some landlords—including Philadelphia-based PREIT—see these closures as an opportunity to recapture spaces and backfill them with higher-performing users. . . . more

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Francesca’s completes review; to go it alone

Chain Store Age
Francesca’s has completed its review of strategic alternatives and there are no big changes in store — at least for now.

Early this year, the struggling young women’s apparel and accessories retailer announced a strategic review, whose options included a possible sale. But on Tuesday, the company announced that it had completed the review and believed the interest of its shareholders were best served “at this time” by focusing on the execution of its turnaround plan. . . . more

J.C. Penney shrinks Q2 loss despite 9% sales drop as CEO Jill Soltau says 'we are rebuilding a business'

The Dallas Morning News
J.C. Penney reported a narrower-than-expected loss on Thursday, but its sales drop of 9% was bigger than forecasts as CEO Jill Soltau said the Plano-based department store made progress.

For the first time since joining Penney in October, Soltau offered guidance for the rest of the year, saying Penney will end 2019 with positive cash flow and earnings before interest and other taxes in the range of $440 million to $475 million. The decline in same-store sales is expected to be in the range of -7% to -8%. . . . more

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Macy's sinks as poor spring season hits profit

Reuters
Macy’s Inc. cut its full-year earnings forecast on Wednesday after missing estimates for quarterly profit for the first time in at least two years, as it discounted heavily to clear spring inventory, sending its shares down 17%.

The department store chain, whose flagship building in Manhattan is a major attraction for tourists, blamed a bigger-than-expected decline in tourist spending for the shortfall along with weak demand for its own-brand women’s sportswear.. . . more

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Analysts expect a less-than-merry holiday season for department stores

NREI
Christmas is more than four months away, but analysts at Credit Suisse already have a warning for investors in department stores: don’t be surprised if they start trimming their outlooks next week.

There’s “mounting evidence” that stores have “significantly lowered their inventory receipt plans ahead of holiday 2019,” analysts led by Michael Binetti wrote in an Aug. 8 note. “Expect a wave of lowered guidance” next week as companies including Macy’s Inc., Dillard’s Inc. and J.C. Penney Co. report results.. . . more

Monday, August 12, 2019

KeyPoint Partners releases Southern New Hampshire report

Boston Real Estate Times
KeyPoint Partners, LLC has released The KeyPoint Report for Southern New Hampshire 2019, Bob Sheehan, Vice President of Research, announced. This comprehensive retail real estate Report examines supply, occupancy, absorption, and retailer expansion and contraction for virtually every retail property in the region.. . . more

Bloomingdale’s becomes first department store to….

CSA
A new player is jumping into the subscription apparel rental market.

Upscale department store retailer Bloomingdale’s, a division of Macy’s Inc., will enter the fray in mid-September with the launch of “My List at Bloomingdale’s,” reported Women’s Wear Daily. The service will kick-off in mid-September with an assortment that includes hundreds of women’s apparel items — from dresses and denim to sweaters and outerwear — from more than 60 brands, with more than 100 exclusive pieces.. . . more

Foot Locker is opening more massive ‘Power’ stores across US—and it’s teaming with Nike to do it

CNBC
Foot Locker is teaming with Nike as it rolls out bigger, more interactive stores.

These so-called Power stores are four times as big as a typical Foot Locker store in malls. The newest will open Saturday in New York — in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan. The retailer plans to open upwards of 50 Power stores over the next three years. It has three in the U.S. today: one in Detroit and two in Philadelphia. . . . more

Friday, August 9, 2019

J.C. Penney at risk of delisting

CSA
J.C. Penney has received notice from The New York Stock Exchange.

The struggling department store retailer announced it received notice on August 6 that it is no longer in compliance with the NYSE’s listing criteria. The criteria requires listed companies to maintain an average closing share price of at least $1.00 over a consecutive 30 trading-day period. Penney, which last closed at $1.00 on June 6, has six months from receiving the notice to regain compliance with the requirement . . . more

Gap Inc. in big renewable energy deal

CSA
Gap Inc. has entered into one of the largest offsite renewable energy contracts by an apparel retailer to date — one that addresses the specific needs of its leased sites. . . . more

Under Armour Q2 mixed as sales continue to fall at home

CSA
Under Armour reported mixed second-quarter results amid a year-long sales decline in North America that shows no signs of stopping anytime soon.

The athletic apparel company had a net loss of $17.3 million, or 4 cents per share, in the quarter ended June 30, compared to a loss of $95.5 million, or 21 cents per share, last year. Analysts has expected a loss of 5 cents per share. . . . more

Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Village at Burlington Mall Announces Next Round of Personal Services, Retail and Restaurant Concepts

Boston Real Estate Times
Simon, a global leader in premier shopping, dining, entertainment and mixed-used destinations, announced that The Village at Burlington Mall will welcome the next round of personal services, retail and restaurants in the coming months as part of Burlington Mall’s redevelopment of the property.. . . more

The Vitamin Shoppe to be acquired

CSA
The Vitamin Shoppe is being acquired by a company that is undergoing a strategic transformation. Liberty Tax will acquire The Vitamin Shoppe, which operates 750 stores, in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $208 million. Under the terms of the deal, Vitamin Shoppe shareholders will receive $6.50 per share, which represents a premium of 43% to its closing share price of $4.54 on August 7, 2019. . . . more

NOODLES & CO. PREPS FOR ‘MEANINGFUL UNIT GROWTH’

Restaurant Business
Noodles & Co., which has maintained a steady number of units for the past couple of years, is ready to explore “meaningful unit growth,” with plans to add a significant number of stores beginning in 2021, company executives said Tuesday. . . more

A'gaci files Ch. 11

Retail Dive
Women's fashion retailer A'Gaci on Wednesday filed under Chapter 11 in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas San Antonio Division, with the intention to "close and wind down all of its brick and mortar store locations." As of Wednesday, the retailer operated 54 retail stores, according to court documents. . . . more

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Barneys files for bankruptcy; will close most stores

CSA
Barneys New York filed for bankruptcy protection with a plan to shrink its store footprint as it looks to find a buyer to breath new life into its struggling operations.

As part of the plan, the 96-year-old fashion-forward luxury retailer will shutter its stores in Chicago, Seattle and Las Vegas and Seattle, along with five smaller format stores and seven Barneys Warehouse locations. . . . more

Walgreens to close 200 U.S. stores

CSA
Walgreens Boots Alliance is reducing its footprint in the United States by about 3%.

In an SEC filing, the drug store operator said it plans to close about 200 U.S. stores, for which it expects to record related pre-tax charges of between $1.9 billion and $2.4 billion. Earlier this summer, the company announced it planned to close 200 Boots stores in the U.K. and that it was also reviewing its portfolio in the U.S., where it operates approximately 10,000 stores. . . . more

Bankruptcies pushing up job cuts — especially in retail

CSA
Job cuts announced due to bankruptcy have hit the highest level since 2009. That’s according to a new analysis of monthly job cut announcements from global outplacement and executive and business coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.. . . more

Target embraces smaller-format stores

CSA
Nearly all Target openings in 2019 are small-format. That’s according to Novak Construction, which as 2020 nears, is preparing to construct two additional small-format Target locations, in Champaign, Ill., and Mayfair (Chicago). Averaging 17,000 sq. ft. each, the stores are 15% the size of a traditional Target. . . . more

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Nordstrom family may try again to gain control of troubled retailer

Seattle Times
Fifteen months after a failed bid to buy all of their namesake company, the Nordstrom family may try again to gain majority control of the retailer.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that members of the Nordstrom family, which now holds 31.3% of the Seattle-based company’s publicly traded shares, are “in the early stages of discussing a proposal” to increase that stake more than 50%.. . . more