Publication: WWD

Dreaming Up An Ideal Store

December 2, 2015

Experts prescribe remedies for ailing beauty sales in languishing chains.

For many shoppers, the average mass-market beauty department is one big yawn. Retailers have elevated the assortment, but clunky, overstocked displays make finding many products difficult. Shoppers know just what to expect when they walk into their local chain store, and that’s the problem, said retail experts polled by WWD. The sameness across retail nameplates is prompting consumers to look elsewhere for beauty. For the first time in years, department and specialty store beauty sales are growing faster than mass.

According to data from IRI for the 52-week period ended Sept. 6, in multiunit stores, most beauty category sales expanded an average of 4.5 percent over the year prior. While that shows some improvement over 2 percent inclines in the first half of 2015, it is below the 7 percent increase in prestige recently reported by The NPD Group.

That’s a tough reality given beauty products produce the second largest portion of sales in drugstores behind pharmacy, and the category ranks within the top five departments at discount stores. Consumers are looking for change.

For years, chain stores have presented beauty in much the same way, with cosmetics brands lining one wall, and skin- and hair-care and bath products filling rows and rows […]

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Saks Fifth Avenue Renovates Men’s Store

March 8, 2013

Saks Fifth Avenue has completed a major renovation of its Beverly Hills men’s store, creating what it calls a “stand-alone lifestyle store” under the name The Fifth Man.

The 54,000-square-foot, four-level unit on Wilshire Boulevard opened in 1995 in a landmark building that was designed by Timothy Pflueger and formerly housed an I. Magnin. The revamp includes several new designer shops, the largest men’s shoe presentation on the West Coast and a new underground home for denim and cocktails, called D-Bar.

“The store has very beautiful bones,” said Tom Ott, senior vice president and general merchandise manager of men’s wear. When it opened, Saks “put in some shops and enhancements to make it more masculine. But the business has changed and we’re trying to create a wonderful store that caters to the Beverly Hills and California market and is not New York-centric.” Ott said the redesign was executed by Los Angeles-based designers to ensure it has “a local flair. Even though we’re a big national company, we pride ourselves on understanding and assorting for local markets.”

Architectural features include exposed ceilings, hand-distressed European white oak floors that lead customers through the selling floor, as well as sustainable composite flooring. It […]

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Conference Attracts Industry’s Heavy Hitters

February 5, 2013

Some of the best and brightest from Bloomingdale’s, Costco, Wal-Mart, Facebook and other companies will participate at The Global Retailing Conference of the University of Arizona’s Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing. 

The conference — a forum bringing business leaders and academia together — will be held April 11 and 12 at Loews Ventana Canyon in Tucson, Ariz.

“Retailing continues to evolve rapidly, with new techniques, processes and technologies emerging virtually every day — all being driven by our customer’s changing habits and preferences. We all must be diligent in understanding what our customers want today and what they will want tomorrow,” said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Macy’s Inc., who will deliver opening remarks. Others will address retail innovation, digital advancement, marketing strategies and consumer behavior. 

Set to speak: Tory Burch; retail presidents Bonnie Brooks of The Hudson’s Bay Co. and Tony Spring of Bloomingdale’s, as well as Jonathan Zrihen of the Clarins Groupe North America, Neil Cole of Iconix, Gary Talarico of Gordon Brothers, Scott Hardy of Polaroid, and Matthew Shay of the National Retail Federation, who all hold the titles of president and ceo.

Also on the speaker roster: Jim Sinegal, Costco’s cofounder; Ira […]

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