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Monday, May 27, 2013

THE BUSINESS AND FASHION NEWSPAPER OF THE HOME TEXTILES INDUSTRY

HomeGoods is Sizzling FRAMINGHAM, MASS. — Even in a strong first quarter for TJX Cos., the 426-unit HomeGoods chain was a standout. Already the 16th largest retailer of home textiles in the United States, it could jump into the top 10 as its parent company plans to nearly double the nameplate’s store count. “I’ll just say it: HomeGoods is on fire,” said TJX ceo Carol Meyrowitz during the off-price chain’s earnings call last week. “Their mix is spectacular. Even when the weather turned, HomeGoods was strong. We are absolutely thrilled with this business.” SEE HOMEGOODS PAGE 19

hometextilestoday.com

Anna-Rama 2013: Slower Start, Faster Finish BY WARREN SHOULBERG L AS VEGAS — Equal parts merchandise show, business conference and full-tilt evangelical rally, the annual Anna’s Linens Conference was held here earlier this month, giving the specialty retailer the chance to show its stuff once again. Alan Gladstone, founder, ceo and the universally acclaimed cultural ringleader of the 315-plus store operation, presided over the four-day event that brought together nearly 800 Anna’s executives, store managers and suppliers. Acknowledging that the Anna’s year had gotten off to a slower start as its budget customer struggled with increases payroll taxes and fuel prices, Gladstone told Home Textiles Today that things had picked up significantly since then. “We just had our biggest April ever and we’re very optimistic about the rest of the year.” Several factors have been driving the Anna’s business over the past year, led by the opening of the Puerto Rico market one year ago this month. There are now seven stores on the island and all rank within the company’s top 10 in sales. “Puerto Rico has exceeded our wildest SEE ANNA’S PAGE 14

Inside This Issue Ellery ceo Transition Planned At Year-end .........................................page 4 New Opening Date for JCP Department ........................................... page 4 Act II ...................................................................................................... page 6 1,000 Count .......................................................................................... page 6 Retail Performance Report: Money Makers...................................... page 8

| Vol. 34, No. 13 | $8.00

PHOTO: JIM K. DECKER

The Next Big Thing?

|

Alan Gladstone, left, of Anna’s with Carl Goldstein of Lichtenberg at the Anna’s Annual Conference in Las Vegas in front of the Bellagio fountains. See pages 12-13 for more photos from Anna’s Vegas fete.

Big Plans in Place for Poufs BY CECILE B. CORRAL NEW YORK — If decorative pillows are the lipstick of a living room, then poufs must be the blush, reinvigorating a living space with a splash of color much like a steady stream of sunshine does to the cheeks of a winter-worn face. Essentially non-existent a few years ago, poufs today represent not just a novel category but a permanent and viable product offering for suppliers and a popular merchandise component for retailers, especially online flash sale sites. HauteLook, which first added poufs to its home mix about a year ago, quickly noticed a correlation in pouf sales with those of decorative pillows. “When we offer poufs and accompanying pillows in mix-and-match color stories, we sell them almost one to one. Our customers are definitely decorating with them in tandem because they allow them to easily decorate a space affordably and fashionably,” Kecia Hielscher, vp of home for HauteLook, told HTT.

A pouf from Majestic Home Goods, offered by HauteLook

SEE POUFS PAGE 20

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

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Ellery ceo Transition Planned At Year-end N E W YO R K — Multi-category home textiles supplier Ellery Homestyles announced that former Sure Fit ceo Hugh Rovit will succeed company founder and Budd Goldman at the end of December 2013. Rovit joined Ellery last week. Goldman will become co-chairman of the company’s board of directors. “I met Budd soon after I entered the home furnishings industry and we have enjoyed a great relationship over the years,” Rovit said. “The chance to join Ellery and help execute on the portfolio of exciting growth strategies that he and his team are developing is a fantastic opportunity for me.”

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Prior to his time at Sure Fit from 2001 to 2005, Rovit was a principal at a consulting firm focused on operational improvement initiatives. Previously, he held the positions of cfo of Best Manufacturing, a manufacturer and distributor of institutional service apparel and textiles, from 1998 through 2001, and cfo of

Royce Hosiery Mills, a manufacturer and distributor of men’s and women’s hosiery from 1991 through 1998. Rovit currently serves on the board of directors of Spectrum Brands Holdings, a $4 billion publicly-traded global consumer products company. “I have known Hugh for many years through the industry and am thrilled to welcome him to Ellery,” Goldman said. “Under his leadership, Sure Fit established itself as a best-inclass business partner to many of the same customers with which we enjoy a similar relationship. His experience managing the company’s significant growth

during his tenure there will be a tremendous asset as we continue building a leading consumer home products business.” In 2010, private investment firm Trivest Partners acquired a majority stake in Ellery. Managing partner Troy Templeton said that at the time of the purchase, “we committed to Budd that together we would develop and execute a ceo succession plan that would be right for all of Ellery’s stakeholders.” He added: “Hugh is a great fit for the company, and the timing is perfect for he and Budd to work together over the balance of the year to ensure a seamless transition.” HTT

New Opening Date for JCP Department

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Mix to Have More Hard Goods PLANO, TEXAS — When the new vision for a JCPenney home department anchored by a Martha Stewart store was announced last year, the opening date was set for March 2013. The date has shifted a few times since then, and during the retailer’s Q1 conference call yet another launch date was announced: June 6. The new home set is under construction in 505 of the company’s roughly 1,100 stores. The revamped assortment will feature a broader array of hard home merchandise than has traditionally been carried in the department, ceo Mike Ullman told analysts during the May 16 call. “We have been more of a soft goods home orientation. Now it’s

more balanced,” he added. “Hard goods tend to be at lower prices, in most cases. I think there won’t be any disappointment there. There will be some aspirational merchandise in the area.” Ullman said the company’s immediate priorities are to restore traffic and drive sales. Penney will also reconcile the operations of its brick-and-mortar stores with its ecommerce business, which under the previous leadership had largely run as its own entity and saw sales volume plummet last year. Store and online assortments will be aligned so store associates can turn to the dot.com business to help customers who can find what they’re looking for during

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A screen concealing the home department construction area, as seen in early April, promised a spring debut.

an in-store visit. As it returns to more promotional retailing, JCPenney is testmarketing new messaging before going national, said Ullman. “We’ve obviously been dark for a long period of time, in

terms of the way that customer expects to shop with us. We’ve had the home store closed for an extended period of time, and home is probably the most promotional part of a department store,” he added. HTT

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JCP Net Loss Widened In Q1, Comps Down 16.6% P LANO , TEXAS — JCPenney’s first-quarter net loss swung to $348 million compared to a net loss of $163 million in the year-ago period, which marked the onset of former ceo Ron Johnson’s transformation strategy. Excluding charges related to restructuring, management payouts and pension plan expense, adjusted net loss for the quarter was $289 million.

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Mike Ullman, who returned to the company as ceo after Johnson’s ouster last month, said over the past five weeks the company has worked on stabilizing its business and improving its balance sheet. “Our objective is to put JCPenney back on a path to profitable growth,” he said. Sales for the quarter ended May 4 fell 16.4% to $2.6 billion, with comps down

16.6%. The company said attributed the poor same-store sales performance to the ongoing remodel of the home department. Gross margin fell to 30.8% of sales compared to 37.6% in last year’s first quarter. Higher levels of clearance merchandise and the restoration of some promotional activity chewed into margin, the company said.

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

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OPINIONTodaY Act II

L

I S T E N I NG T O Mike Ullman lead JCPenney’s quarterly conference call for the first time since returning to the big chair, I was struck by the comparison to recently departed chief Ron Johnson’s inaugural call as the retailer’s ceo in November 2011. “I am not here to improve,” declared Johnson. “I am here to transform.” Ullman took a different tack in his opening remarks to analysts on May 16. After noting that a bond tender in progress would limit EDITOR-IN-CHIEF what executives could say about forward-looking business, he said he was also constrained by “my own instinct to not get ahead of ourselves as we talk about the future.” It wasn’t Ullman’s first go-around on a quarterly conference call, of course. He was Penney’s ceo for seven years before Johnson took the reins in fall 2011. He conducted the recent call in his usual flat, unemotional monotone. He even managed to praise a few of the changes that took place during his 18-month absence at the retailer’s helm. But… But between the lines, he made several points that had more than a frisson of vindication. For starters, his remarks about the the shop-in-shops that were the centerpiece of Johnson’s vision for a 21st Century JCPenney. Ullman repeatedly characterized them as “attractions” — and in a way that made clear this is the new company terminology for the branded areas. Customers see them “more as features,” he said. “Things that when they turn around

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from shopping the core, they see a Sephora or they see Liz Claiborne or a Joe Fresh.” Please note, gentle reader, Sephora and Liz Claiborne were brought into the company during the first Ullman era. Ullman placed “attractions” third in importance to driving the business, with Penney private label brands leading the way, followed by national brands. While the core brands are the most promotional, “they also tend to be the most profitable,” he said. He also emphasized the importance of listening — both to the store associates on the front lines and to JCPenney’s customers. This stands in vivid contrast to Johnson, who elicited a great deal of guff from store workers for not soliciting their feedback and an even more severe load of criticism from executives in the trade for not testing new ideas before rolling them out across the store. In another example of implicit criticism, Ullman said: “Well, the way I would characterize the merchandise structure across the store, the core of our business is the private label business, private brand business. And we diminished several of the key brands during this phase [i.e., the Johnson period]. And we lost a lot of traffic, so that customer told us loud and clear — St. John’s Bay maybe being the best example — that they would visit again if we had the products that they enjoyed, and they could buy it at the price promotion and calculus that they were used to. That’s how they want to shop.” Nonetheless, the company is not “going back” entirely to the pre-Johnson strategy, said Ullman, nor is it abandoning some of the programs put in place during Ullman’s interregnum. And therein lies the rub. The story of Penney’s transformation — or reclamation — remains far from over. HTT

1,000 Count

S

A DLY, THIS IS NOT a story about thread count. Sadly, the 1,000 count is about the number of people — actually some 1,100 — killed in the apparel factory building collapse in Bangladesh a few weeks ago. And sadly, this is about the utter and near total failure of apparel and soft home importers in the United States and the rest of the Western world to act decisively, properly and morally to address this tragedy. Because while this particular factory only made apparel products and it was only in Bangladesh, the problem of terrible working conditions in the places where these things are made extends far beyond those narrow borders. The home textiles industry escaped this most recent nightmare it is every bit as vulnerable and sooner or later this will Warren but happen to somebody in this business. The apparel industry’s response so far has been positiveShoulberg ly shameful. While some retailers have supported a broadPUBLISHER/ EDITORIAL DIRECTOR based monitoring and standards organization, many American stores have not. Walmart says it will adapt its own policies. Sears, Penney and others are still studying the situation. Others are conspicuous by their total silence. What we will be left with is a patchwork of policies that will do more to put a good face on the situation to Western shoppers than to fix the problem. Factories that have to meet multiple standards and deal with numerous monitoring organizations will end up looking for ways to circumvent the problem rather than solve it. And even if a consensus could be arrived at, all of this conversation so far is only about one country, Bangladesh. Granted, this seems to be among the worst situations anywhere, but it is by no means the only. Emerging second-tier Asian sourcing nations like Vietnam, Indonesia, Cambodia and others are certainly not immune to these problems. Even the big three in Asia — China, India and Pakistan — have factories with sub-par working conditions. Still, the home textiles business is virtually invisible in this discussion. Where are the big retailers — Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, Target — in taking a proactive role in addressing the problems in soft goods factories in Asia and elsewhere? Where is the industry’s association in all of this? Where are the individual suppliers who are in fact the importers who pick where products are made? Nowhere. There is a short window for the home textiles industry to come together and aggressively work to improve this problem. It has to be done unilaterally and with a cohesive approach rather than on a company-by-company basis. And it needs to be started last week ... or the counts will keep getting higher and higher. HTT

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Retail Briefs

Nothing Lasts Forever

T

H E Y E A R WA S 1889 when Louisville “Bobby D, we love you, man, and want to make you Bedding was founded, but in this crazy a proposition. You can either stay in L.A. and starve retail/wholesale world we live in, nothing or move east and handle major accounts for us.” lasts forever. You probably alSo, the Dworkins loaded up the truck and ready know that Hollander Home Fashmoved to Beverly ... Massachusetts, that is. Bob ions has bought Louisville’s retail busiOver the next 10 years I called on all the big Dworkin ness and LBC will now strictly be a fiber guys like Ames, Caldor, Bradlees, Rich’s, GUEST COLUMNIST supplier to the mattress industry. Filenes, Lee Jay, Linens ‘n Things (my bigI was fortunate enough to be part of gest account), Marmaxx, Ross, Bed Bath & this great Louisville Bedding CompaBeyond, and Macy’s NY. Once again, we ny for the past three decades. When I even serviced the small guys like The Fair, first started in the mid ’80s, my home Rudnicks, Almys, Filenes Basement, etc. base was southern California and my It wasn’t too long before Groundhog Day major accounts included May Co, The popped its ugly head once again and everyBroadway, Bullocks, Robinsons, Gemco, one started going out of business, except of Fedco, FedMart, Bullocks Wilshire, Price course, the powerhouses like Ross, Marmaxx, Club,Walker Scott, Strouds, and Three D. In north- BBB and Macy’s. ern California, I worked with the Emporium, Macys Louisville Bedding’s management was nice West, Home Express, Gottschalks and Weinstocks. enough to once again offer me a fresh look at life I also called on surrounding states like Arizona, and I relocated to Florida to call on assorted acwhich featured Diamonds, Goldwaters, Broadway counts from my new home base. So today, I truly Southwest and Smittys. In the Pacific Northwest, we have mixed feelings about our recent sale. ... sadserviced The Bon Marche, Pacific Linen, Frederick dened to no longer be working with one of the truly and Nelson, and Meir and Frank. Let’s not forget great home textiles companies in history, but also about Hawaii’s Liberty House and The Gem. happy to have worked with so many great people Back in those days we even serviced small mom- and to see so many of them retain their jobs with and-pop stores, too numerous to list. Over the years, Hollander. business boomed until one day I woke up and saw Nothing lasts forever, so please enjoy today. everyone either going out of business or being taken HTT — Bob Dworkin has been an exclusive agent with over by Macy’s New York. At the end of my decade in L.A., every single one Louisville Bedding since 1989. He began his career of the above accounts was either kaput or on life in May Company’s executive training program, then support. LBC’s management came to me and said, went on to Burlington and Saturday Knight Ltd.

Palm Springs Rattan Creates Custom Replacement Cushion Program L ARGO, FLA . — Wicker and rat-

tan manufacturer Palm Springs Rattan recently introduced Perfect Fit, an interactive custom replacement cushion design and order program available to casual furnishing retailers. Perfect Fit is a proprietary program that can be emailed or installed via a disc at the retail level and enables consumers to custom order replacement. Cushions are designed to customer specification and then ordered by email or fax to Palm Spring Rattan’s facility in Florida for production. “Our decision to offer Perfect Fit was in response to retailer requests for a reliable source and easy to manage program for quality replacement cushions,” said Tami Newton, sales manager of Palm Springs Rattan and Garden Classics. “The program has been received positively not only by consumers due to the easy online functionality, but also by re-

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

> hometextilestoday.com

comScore: Ecommerce up 13% in Q1

O

nline retail spending in the first quarter climbed 13% to $50.2 billion, according to comScore, which measures the digital world. The results marked the 14th consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and 10th consecutive quarter of double-digit growth. It was also just the second quarter on record to surpass $50 billion in spending, according to the firm. The measurement, which tracks ecommerce purchases from home and work, excludes auctions, autos and large corporate purchases. comScore reported nearly half (49%) of the time consumers spent online in the retail realm took place on mobile devices. Smartphone access (34%) was more frequent than tablets (14%).

Kohl’s Creates New Position: Chief Customer Officer

K

ohl’s has hired longtime Starbucks exec Michelle Gass for the newly created position of chief customer officer, effective June 17. She will oversee branding across all platforms, including the ecommerce business, with a view to creating a consistent omnichannel customer experience. She reports to Kevin Mansell, chairman, president and ceo. Gass spent more than 16 years in a number of senior positions at Starbucks Corporation, most recently as president of Starbucks Europe, Middle East and Africa. Before Starbucks, she worked in marketing and new product development with Procter & Gamble Company.

Lowe’s Toughs it Out

D

espite delayed spring selling in parts of the country, Lowe’s net earnings ticked up 2.5% to $540 million, or 49 cents per share in the first quarter. Sales slipped 0.5% to $13.1 billion and comps declined 0.7%. “Results for indoor categories were solid for the quarter, a testament to the team’s continued focus on improving our core business through cross-functional collaboration and consistent execution in stores and across other selling channels,” said Robert Niblock, chairman, president and ceo.

Target Launches Summer Collection Drawn From DC Comics Archives

T Retailers can provide their consumers with up to 12 cushion types.

tailers that have found it to be a tremendous source for the generation of additional revenue.” Twelve cushion designs are available in the program, includ-

ing sling pads, bench, dining and deep seating cushions. Additional options addressed within the program include fabric, seam style, welting, and thickness. HTT

arget has teamed with Warner Bros. Consumer Products on a broad summer collection featuring DC Comics characters. The Justice League merchandise assortment includes more than 50 products in the home, stationery, sporting goods, and lawn and garden categories. It debuted May 19. The exclusive merchandising deal was inspired by “DC Comics — The New 52-inch comic book character designs featuring DC Comics’ super heros Aquaman, Batman, Cyborg, The Flash, Green Lantern, Superman and Wonder Woman.

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

News

> hometextilestoday.com

Money Makers Off-Pricers Do it Best N EW YORK — Even in a soft economy with consumer

confidence pinging up and down like a yo-yo, there was money to be made in the retail business last year. Off-pricers were profitability stars during the worst of the recession, and as the economy slowly recovers they remained in the lead. As was the case in HTT’s last Retail Performance Report, which covered profitability metrics for 2010 among the leading home textiles retailers in the United States, Ross Stores topped the profitability index for 2012, followed by TJX Cos. in second place and Bed Bath & Beyond in third. Ross vice chairman and ceo Michael Balmuth noted in the company’s year-end report that profit margin benefited from higher gross margins on merchan-

dise, a 6% bump in same-store sales, leverage on operating expenses and the addition of a 53rd week in the retail year. The business threw off enough cash for Ross to continue repurchasing stock — something it’s done every year since 1993 — and hike its quarterly cash dividend for the 19th consecutive time since 1994. The story was similar at TJX Cos., where the company plans a 26% bump in the stock dividend to be delivered to shareholders next month — the 17th consecutive year TJX has raised the dividend. Since 1996, the retailer’s dividend has grown at a compound annual rate of 23%. “Our business continues to generate enormous amounts of excess cash,” ceo Carol Meyrowitz said

Gross Margin as % of Sales 1. Pier 1

Sales per Square Foot

2. Bed Bath & Beyond

40.21

2. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

3. Macy’s

40.0

3. The TJX Cos.

39.20

5. Kohl’s Corp.

36.0

6. TJX

35.0

7. Family Dollar

9. JCPenney 10.Target

10

20

5. Target

$300

32.0

8. Pier 1

31.3

9. Macy’s

40

50

$259 $232 $198 $184 $181

10. Family Dollar

30

$369 $355

7. Kohl’s

30.38

0

$4711

4. Ross Stores, Inc.

6. Bed Bath and Beyond

34.0

8. Tuesday Morning

$907

1. Costco

43.5

4. Big Lots

when TJX announced its fiscal year performance. Bed Bath and Beyond added to its empire in 2012 with the acquisition of competitor Cost Plus World Market and the privately owned Linen Holdings, a distributor of textiles and other products to the institutional trade. Together, they accounted for 58% of the retailer’s top line increase, which also benefi ted from comp store increases and new store sales. Gross profit margin, on the other hand, fell 120 basis points during the year. Even though Bed Bath & Beyond engaged in less markdown activity, it saw increases in both coupon redemption and the average coupon amount. It also attributed the softer metric to a shift in the merchandise mix to lower margin goods. HTT

0

4.2

200

400

600

800

1000

BEST AT THE BOTTOM LINE RETAILER

1. Ross Stores Inc. 2. TJX Cos. 3. Bed Bath & Beyond 4. Pier 1 5. Costco 6. Family Dollar 7. Macy’s 8. Big Lots 9. Walmart 10. Kohl’s 11. Target 12. Tuesday Morning 13. Sears Holdings 14. JCPenney

TOTAL PROFIT MARGIN

OPERATING MARGIN

RETURN ON ASSETS

RETURN ON EQUITY

8.09 7.37 9.51 7.59 1.88 4.32 4.82 3.28 3.62 5.11 4.09 -4.19 -2.33 -7.59

13.08 12 15.01 11.67 2.86 6.88 9.63 5.65 5.93 9.8 7.33 -5.2 -2.04 -10.32

21.43 20.05 16.53 14.08 25.88 3.14 7.73 11.23 8.37 8.42 6.23 -2.44 -2.5 -7.9

44.53 52.01 25.44 25.12 17.33 32.2 22.28 22.41 22.27 15.71 18.11 -17.65 -28.06 -27.43

TOTAL PERFORMANCE RATE

87.13 67.43 66.49 58.46 47.95 46.54 44.46 42.57 40.19 39.04 35.76 -28.48 -34.93 -53.24

Methodology The retailers garnered their positions via a performance rating composed of four key metrics: profit and operating margins (which are measures of profitability); and return on assets and return on equity (which are measurements of management effectiveness). The data compiled reflects the most recent trailing 12-month period — year over year.

Source: SEC filings, Yahoo Finance, MarketWatch and quarterly conference call information

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

Umbra Readies Shanghai Flagship Store TORONTO — Seven years after Umbra unveiled its first flagship store here, the housewares brand is preparing for the June 11 opening of its new concept store in Shanghai. Umbra began producing its original home décor designs in Canada over thirty-three years ago. “I am proud to say that we have stayed true to the original idea of functional, original, beautiful products that often have a sense of fun and excitement,” said Les Mandelbaum, president and co-founder of

Umbra Ltd. The 1,700-square-foot store will be located in Shanghai’s Jinqiao Mall at 3611 Zhangyang Road and will carry kitchen and bath accessories as well as gift and homeware products. “Our designers hail from around the world, which has helped us create a truly international style. We hope that we’ll be as popular here in China as we are in over 100 other countries,” said Paul Rowan, cofounder and vp of Inspiration. HTT

> hometextilestoday.com

Hye Jung In Wins Surtex designext Grand Prize N EW YORK — Hye Jung In of

Seoul, Korea, a recent graduate in Textile Design at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, was named the winner of the 2013 designnext international student competition organized annually by the Surtex surfaces design trade show. The Grand Prize comes with a $1000 cash award. For this year’s competition, students were challenged to create an overall concept and a minimum of six surface designs that would be appropriate in a gym, spa, health clinic or similar setting. Hye Jung In used imagery of Marrakesh, Morocco pulled from travel photos of the city. The judges lauded her sensitivity to surface, pattern and design for the global market in her portfolio. “This year, 75 participants in the designext competition from 15 colleges developed distinctive portfolios that position them for entry into the surface design industry. All students have benefitted from the learning experience: to prepare commercially viable work on a defined theme

Jung In at the Surtex show last week with her winning designs.

that will translate to diverse surfaces. Each year, the four winners have utilized the contacts they made at Surtex to launch

PHOTO : DANIEL D’ERRICO

Co-founders Paul Rowan, left, and Les Mandelbaum at Umbra’s Toronto store.

News

promising careers,” said Penny Sikalis, vp of show organizer GLM and manager of the Surtex show. HTT

View our Video mwwsolutions.com

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5/22/2013 3:05:00 PM


COUNTDOWN TO INTERTEXTILE SHANGHAI HOME TEXTILES /A SPECIAL ADVERTISING REPORT

Milan Comes to Shanghai A brand new partnership is bringing a first-time-ever Pavilion from the famed Proposte Fair to this year’s Intertextile Shanghai this August

There truly will be a meeting of the best of both worlds with the big news that the organizers of the famous Proposte fair held every May outside Milan, Italy in Como will be setting up a Pavilion at this year’s Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles Fair. This agreement will commence with the 2013 edition of the August fair and run through the 2015 show. This cooperation will see the creation of the Proposte China Pavilion @ Intertextile pavilion which will showcase the best of “Made in Europe” to Chinese and overseas buyers. All together about 25 European manufacturers of high-quality decorative and furniture fabrics are expected to exhibit at the new Pavilion.

Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles - Autumn Edition will be held August 27-29 at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre in Shanghai, China. For more information, please visit www.intertextilehome.com.

“The demand for European brands in the domestic Chinese market is growing exponentially,” said Wendy Wen, Senior General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd., organizers of the show, “so trade fairs such as this are an excellent opportunity for companies from Europe to find new markets, while local buyers can gain access to quality European-made products all in the one place.” Established in 1993, the Proposte trade fair brings together some of the best home furnishing and curtain fabric producers from Italy and throughout Europe. It is a specialized fair in the sense that it only accepts direct producers of these products. While it is selective as exhibitors must meet three criteria: the qualification of the company and its products, professional fairness and a commitment to research and experimentation in the field of aesthetics and new technology. The 2013 Proposte fair saw 97 exhibitors take part, with 45 from Italy and 52 from other European countries. Only exhibitors from Proposte’s

2013 fair will be invited to take part at Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles. This will include suppliers of upholstery fabrics and accessories, curtain fabrics and accessories and window screen fabrics. “The time has come for Proposte to open its doors in other countries,” said Mauro Cavelli, president of the fair. “Having scrutinized the various opportunities we decided on China, a huge country that has seen its economy and customs evolve at an unrivalled rate.” The involvement of Proposte at Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles will enhance the European flavor of the fair. Apart from the Proposte China pavilion, Belgium, Greece, Korea, India, Italy, Taiwan and Turkey pavilions will also be featured. This is the third in a series of special promotional previews for Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles, the leading home textiles trade exhibition in Asia. The next Countdown to Intertextile Shanghai will appear in the June 24 issue of Home Textiles Today.

The Proposte Fair in Italy, pictured here from the 2012 edition, is organizing a “Best of Europe” pavilion that will be part of the Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles fair this August.

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

News

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Anna’s Arrives in Vegas

PHOTOS BY JIM K. DECKER

The Anna’s Merchandising Team: from left, Peggie Galvin, Sharon Magro, Alan Gladstone, Jennifer Knapp, Carie Doll, Jeannie Wolf, Tim Bynon, Maggie Negrete, John Partington and Katie Peterson.

At the vendor reception, from left, Justin Piscione and Andy Piscione of P&A Marketing, Lou Casali of Perfect Fit and Loren Sweet of Brentwood, which was named vendor of the year.

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Vendors included, from left, Bob Weiss and Henny Lakin of Creative Bath and Jeff Moss of Welspun.

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News

May 27, 2013

Home Textiles Today

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The Lichtenberg team, from left, Scott Goldstein, Scott Lichtenberg, Michael and Lisa Lichtenberg and Carl Goldstein. At the reception, from left, Richard Rae of Pacific Coast Home Fashions, Sara Asher of Sara Asher Sales and Orlando Aguiliar and Maggie Negrete of Anna’s.

Vendors on hand were, from left, Pam Banks of Springs Global and David Baines and Caryn Tatasciore of Maytex Mills.

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At the reception, from left, Allen Josephson of Veratex and Kelly and John Olsen of Suntex/Sun Yin.

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Home Textiles Today

Anna’s Annual ANNA’S FROM PAGE 1

expectations so far,” he said, adding that Anna’s will look to open additional units there this year. The retailer, which bases its operating strategy around opening price points across the product spectrum, has also been doing a bit of trading up more recently. “We have 5.2 million fans on our website and those customers are telling us they

May 27, 2013

want us to raise our price points and expand our assortments.” For Anna’s that means more $25 and $30 window panels and bedding sets that break through the $100 retail price point. The store is also adding more upscale products such as duvet covers and down bedding. “I didn’t foresee there ever being duvets at Anna’s when I started.” There will also be more hard goods going forward, an expansion path Anna’s has been pur-

Jenny Zhu and Jared Cohen of Triangle Home Fashions, which was named new vendor of the year by Anna’s.

News

suing for several years. Eventually housewares and tabletop will account for twice as much of the company’s sales as they do today, he said. Anna’s is also investing in its online business and has seen a 50% comp increase in web sales, though the base remains somewhat modest. “Online should be 10% of our overall sales within three years.” Other investments have come in an increased merchan-

> hometextilestoday.com

dising team — Anna’s added two “seasoned members” to its buying roster this past year — new inventory management software and a new ad agency. All of this means Gladstone will continue on his path to keep expanding the Anna’s store count. While still holding out 1,000 units as the holy Anna’s grail, over the next 12 months the company should get close to 350 with 20 brand new stores as well as 15 complete remodels and seven

Executives at the event included, from left, Tom O’Connor of Springs and Frank Snow of Royale Linens.

relocations. St. Louis was a new market for the retailer so far and there will be one more additional territory by the end of the year. One of those 300-plus Anna’s units will be especially important: Gladstone said the company is working on a new prototype that it will unveil sometime later this year. The store may veer from the 10,000-square-foot size that is the Anna’s traditional footprint, but he declined to reveal any other details in the works. Gladstone laid out much of the Anna’s game plan to employees and suppliers alike during the conference here, held at the Planet Hollywood hotel. More than 50 vendors displayed their wares for store managers and all joined in for the highlight of the week, the awards banquet where best performing stores and suppliers were honored. Anna’s also called attention to its support of the St. Jude Children’s Hospital, its favorite charity. This year, the company made a $715,000 donation to the facility, bringing its total over the past four years to $2.5 million. The dinner, Gladstone said, “is the heart and soul of Anna’s.” That could also be said about Gladstone, who founded the retailer a quarter of a century ago and shows no signs of slowing down. “I’ve still got some more work to do.” HTT

The vendor reception was held at the Hyde Club where a highlight was the Bellagio fountain show set against the Paris Hotel’s Eiffel Tower.

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5/22/2013 10:57:58 AM


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Proposte Tallies up 2013 CERNOBBIO, ITALY — Weakness in the European economy slightly depressed attendance at the recent Proposte show here, but the number of visitors from Australia, China, Japan, Greece, India, Poland, Taiwan and Turkey increased. There were 372 attendees from the United States, up from 236 last year. The furnishings fabrics and curtains fair drew 6,151 visitors, down 3.33% from last year. Non-Italian visits made up 65% of the attendees. “While customers generally planned cautious buying, demonstrating the need to proceed warily in ever-changing markets, the event was judged by the exhibitors to be lively given the variety of countries represented and the interest shown

Proposte’s 2013 edition drew over 6,000 visitors.

in the new collections,” the show said in a statement. The next edition of Proposte in Cernobbio will take place May 7-9, 2014. This summer,

the first Proposte Shangahi show will be held from Aug. 27-29 as part of the Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles show. HTT

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From Nourison’s Tahoe Modern Collection

that each rug in the program “is the perfect accent piece for a new approach to sophisticated and ultra-elegant décor.” Tahoe Modern will be on display in Nourison’s showrooms

this summer in Atlanta, in space 3F2 of the AmericasMart during the International Rug Market, and in Las Vegas, in suite C112 of Building C during the Las Vegas Market. HTT

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Home Accent Fabrics Spotlights Digital Printing HARRISON, N.Y. — Home Accent

Nourison Expands Tahoe With New Modern Line Extension SADDLE B ROOK , N.J. — Nourison is building on the reaction to its Tahoe collection of wool hand-knotted rugs by adding several new styles to the program for launch this spring/summer season. The new offering, aptly named Tahoe Modern, features a broad array of looks, including contemporary interpretations of animal prints, painterly crosshatchings, fanciful fleurde-lis, vivid ikats, and others. All Tahoe Modern rugs are handmade in India of 100% wool and are available is a range of sizes spanning accent through roomsizes as well as runners. “We have made the rugs more contemporary through the use of color, absence of borders, and cleaner lines while still maintaining the overall feel of this popular collection,” explained Joyce Lowe, executive director, Nourison’s rug division. The company said its new “unusual yet delightfully harmonious color combinations” for Tahoe Modern rugs were created to match with current home fashion trends, adding

Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

Fabrics is showcasing a collection of new decorative fabrics developed using digital printing technologies at the upcoming Showtime Fabric Market in High Point, N.C., which takes place from June 2-5. The four-year-old decorative fabric converter is presenting a portfolio of fresh fashions and cutting-edge colorations including prints, stripes, yarn-dyes, woven jacquards and embroidered fabrics, many created using state-of-the-art printing and weaving techniques. “Digital printing is a fourcolor process that is allows us to duplicate any form of artwork without worrying about the number of screens that need to be cut or separated,” said Ronnie Gold, co-founder and d e s i g n di r e c tor for Home Accent Fabrics. “This technology allows us to be more daring in design without the initial costs of screen expense or inventory. The company’s Aurora pattern, for example, suggests a contemporary painting with elongated brushstrokes reminiscent of an ikat print. “Although we can’t take credit for inventing this digital technology, we understand how to use it to achieve interesting and innovative effects that previously have not been seen in the decorative fabric industry,” said Gold. Home Accent Fabrics was founded in 2009 by industry veterans Gold and Lee Kabat, a husband-and-wife team with more than five decades of combined experience in the design, logistics and sourcing of decorative fabrics. The company also

has warehouse facilities in Charlotte, N.C. Gold was formerly vp of design for Bloomcraft and WestPoint Stevens, and has won numerous design awards, including seven Tommy Awards from the American Printed Fabrics Council; the HomeTex Design Award from the Home Fashion Products Association; and Cotton Incorporated’s Design Excellent Award. Kabat served in several executive positions for leading decorative fabric firm P/Kaufmann for 30 years, most recently as corporate vp. He also was a founder and president of the International Textile Market Associa-

Home Accent Fabrics is offering a portfolio of designs showcasing digital printing at Showtime next month.

tion (ITMA) and an originator of Showtime. “We also are experiencing growth with bedding and home fashion manufacturers, and exploring export opportunities,” said Kabat. “The line is designed to provide tight coordination of woven and printed product in four to five on-trend color stories each season. We are not trying to be all things to all people, but rather to present a sharply focused line that offers our customers a point of difference.” The company displays its existing collections on its new website, www.homeaccentfabrics.com. HTT

5/22/2013 3:50:01 PM


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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

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PEOPLETodaY Valdese Makes New Appointments for the Contract Business VALDESE, N.C. — Valdese Weav- providing leadership to fulfill the manager for Cone Jacquards. “Fay’s strength in construcers had added new personnel for Valdese Weavers Contract overthe Valdese Weavers Contract all growth strategy,” said senior tion and weave development brand: Scott George, Fay McFe- vp and chief marketing officer will be a great asset to our conBlake Millinor. tract design team,” said Laura tridge and Rosemary Harley. Levinson, senior vp /design George has and merchandising. joined the comHarley was hired last pany as vp /sales October as senior designer. and marketing of Her focus is on developing Valdese Weavers products for the contract Contract. A vetarea both in seating and prieran of the convacy curtain fabrics. She tract industry, he R OSEMARY SCOTT GEORGE has held design positions at has held senior FAY MCFETRIDGE HARLEY Valdese Valdese Valdese Craftex, Victor, and most management recently Bentex Mills. positions with McFetridge has become “We are excited to have Rosecompanies such as Mastercraft Contract, which Valdese Weav- designer director for Valdese mary’s talents added to our conWeavers Contract. Her more tract team. Her experience in ers acquired in 2007. “Scott brings over 25 years of than 20 years of experience in the privacy curtain market will experience managing and grow- textiles includes an earlier stint help us produce products suiting textile businesses and will as a designer at Valdese Weaver. able for this area,” said Levinprovide a seamless transition in She was most recently design son. HTT

Gordmans Names Senior vp for Planning and Allocation O MAHA , N EB . — Apparel and

home décor retailer Gordmans has hired Geoffrey Ayoub as senior vp of planning, allocation and analysis. Most recently, he was chief planning officer at Edcon, a $2 billion retail company based in South Africa operating more than 1,000 stores under multiple formats in five countries.

Prior to that, he was senior vp of business planning and integration at Home Shopping Network. He also held various positions at JCPenney, including vp of business process development. Before Penney, he spent seven years at Limited Brands. “Geoff has comprehensive expertise in developing innova-

tive strategies and processes to achieve significant sales growth objectives,” said Jeff Gordman, president and ceo. “He is adept at leveraging technology to optimize sales and planning and allocation-ceo processes. Geoff’s planning acumen will help drive Gordmans’ continued expansion in both new and existing markets.” HTT

Former Home Textiles Exec Joins Newport Board Group N EW YORK — Jack Toolan has become a partner in the Newport Board Group, a national professional services firm that helps middle market companies drive growth and improve performance. Toolan spent many years at WestPoint Stevens in various senior executive positions, at one point handling the Ralph Lauren Home business. He joined Li & Fung USA, a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based global sourcing group Li & Fung Ltd., in 2004 as senior vp and general manager of the Cannon and Cannon Royal Family global licenses. Afterward, he exited the home textiles JACK TOOLAN Newport Board business, serving for four years as coo and ceo of Group Sportcraft, a sporting goods company. In addition to providing insight to clients, Toolan also blogs about business on the Newport Board Group website. HTT

Universal Home Fashions Expands Team

KAITLIN O’LEARY Universal Home Fashions

N E W Y O R K — Universal Home Fashions announced the return of Kaitlin O’Leary to the company as well as the hiring of Ken Bragers. O’Leary serves as senior designer and will lead the design team as the company expands it bedding, window and bath businesses. She reports directly to president Christopher Certosimo. Bragers is vp of basic bedding. His more than 20 years in the industry includes roles at JLA Home and Hollander Home Fashions. HTT

HSNi Announces Promotions ST. PETERSBURG, FLA. — Multi-

channel retailer HSNi, parent of HSN and the Cornerstone brands, has promoted Judy Schmeling to coo/cfo. She had been executive vp and cfo since

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2011. She adds oversight of supply chain operations and customer care to her previous responsibilities, which include finance and information technology.

HSNi also announced the promotion of two senior finance executives, Michael Attinella and Patrick Vonderhaar, both reporting to Schmeling. Attinella was appointed cfo of HSN

and chief accounting officer of HSNi. Vonderhaar was elevated from vp and corporate controller to cfo for Cornerstone Brands. In addition, Rob Solomon has been appointed executive vp

for customer care & operations administration for HSNi, and Bob Monti was named executive vp for supply chain & logistics, HSNi, both reporting to Schmeling. HTT

5/22/2013 11:13:49 AM


register noW! 2013 Logistics conference

L

GISTICS:

in search of A seamless supply chain Join us for this special one-day conference filled with expert speakers, panels and workshops devoted exclusively to retailers and manufacturers in the gifts and home furnishings industries. tUesDAY, JUne 11, 2013 6:00pm-7:30pm Networking Cocktail Reception AmericasMart, Bldg 2 West, 4th Floor Foyer

WeDnesDAY, JUne 12, 2013 AmericAsmArt, AtlAntA, GA For more information, contact Heather Grant, Conference & Events Manager 336-605-1061 or hgrant@sandowmedia.com

WeDnesDAY, JUne 12, 2013 8:20am-8:50am Check-in and Registration 4th Floor Foyer

8:50am-9:00am Welcome 204-F/G Ray Allegrezza, Editor in Chief, Furniture/Today

9:00am-9:45am Keynote Address 204-F/G Dave Pollard, Managing Director, FedEx Solutions

9:45am-10:45am Ocean Freight Panel 204-F/G Thanks to ongoing concerns about port strikes, frequent changes to ocean freight rates, bunker price changes and ongoing forecasting challenges, ocean freight rate management is becoming tougher than ever for both importers and exporters. Our panel will look at the key challenges in the sector and also discuss best-practice strategies to minimize those obstacles. • Bill Smith, Globe Express Services • Chuck Miller, Klaussner Furniture Industries • Cliff Pyron, Georgia Ports Authority • John Lomax, Furniture Brands International • Mike Morris, Maersk Line

10:45am-11:00am Break 4th Floor Foyer

11:00am -12:00pm Legislative Update 204-F/G Dave Osiecki, American Trucking Associations, Inc.

12:00pm-1:00pm Lunch and Networking 204-B

1:00pm- 2:00pm Trucking Panel: On the Road Again 204-F/G With trucking on the rise and the actual number of truckers on the downside, will this critical link in the supply chain be forced to travel rocky roads, or is pedal-to-the-metal time just around the corner? Our panel of experts will navigate these and other important issues facing the trucking industry. • Ray Kuntz, Watkins and Shepard Trucking • Jack Hawn, Zenith Global Logistics • Joe Wade, Shelba D. Johnson Trucking, Inc. • Edward Massood, Thomasville Home Furnishings of NJ

2:00pm-3:00pm Home Delivery Panel 204-F/G Today’s consumer is educated, factually armed and dangerously demanding. As a result, both retailers and their carriers often live or die on that last mile. Our panel will discuss key trends, best practices and also consider how technology is impacting this segment of the supply chain. • Thomas Bolden, Masco Cabinetry • Will O’Shea, 3PD • Satish Natarajan, Dispatch Track • Maryjane Fanizzi, Ashley Furniture HomeStores

3:00pm-3:15pm Break 4th Floor Foyer

3:15pm-4:15pm Retail Panel 204-F/G Most analysts agree that E-commerce, which generated $231 billion in sales for U.S. retailers last year, is likely to grow to more than $260 billion this year. But what opportunities and challenges does this steady and swift growth represent to the supply chain? Our panel will touch on these and other topics. • Mike O’Hanlon, Wayfair • Tony Heslin, Lovesac • Lenny Kharitonov, Unlimited Furniture Group • Patrick Cory, Cory Home Delivery

4:15pm Closing Remarks & Adjourn 204-F/G Ray Allegrezza, Editor in Chief, Furniture/Today

Sponsored by:

register onLine At: fUrnitUretoDAY.com/2013Logisticscon


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Home Textiles Today

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May 27, 2013

BUSINESS TodaY Walmart Sees Soft Q1 BENTONVILLE, ARK. — Walmart cited unseasonably cool weather and delayed tax refunds for its underperformance during the first quarter. At U.S. Walmart stores, the home department’s same-store sales were down in the mid singledigits, primarily due to soft sales in outdoor living merchandise. At Sam’s Club, home was also down,

although domestics and mattresses saw modest gains, executives said during the company’s quarterly conference call May 16. “Frankly, we had a more difficult quarter than expected when we announced our guidance in February. It’s important to note that Walmart U.S. continued to gain market share across several key categories,” said Mike Duke,

president and ceo of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. For the quarter ended April 30, net income rose 1.1% to $3.78 billion, or $1.14 per share. Total revenues rose 1.0% to $114.2 billion. Comps at Walmart U.S., excluding fuel, declined 1.4%. Same-store sales at Sam’s Club ticked up 0.2%. HTT

Kohl’s Profit Dips in Q1 M ENOMENEE FALLS, WIS. — Al-

though all lines of business at Kohl’s experienced sales declines during the first quarter, home outperformed the store average, led by strength in electrics and luggage. Net income for the quarter ended May 4 fell 4% to $147 million. Sales slipped 1% to $4.2

billion, with comps down 1.9%. The 2.4% increase in units per transaction was offset by a 1.1% decline in average unit retail. Ecommerce sales jumped 31%. Looking ahead, chairman/ president/ceo Kevin Mansell said he sees “a lot of pent-up demand for spring merchandise out there.”

The 1,155-store ret ailer plans to step up its marketing following tests during the fi rst quarter. Kohl’s expects a second quarter sales increase of 1% to 3% and a same-store sales performance to be fl at to up 2%. Gross margin is expected to rise by 10-20 basis points. HTT

Same-store sales

May’s Second Week Falls Short as Mother’s Day Shopping Ends NEW YORK — With Mother’s Day shopping over, comps Johnson Redbook Index were up just 2.4% in the Second week of May, year-over-year % change second week of May comWEEK ENDED 5/11 5/18 5/25 6/1 MONTH TARGET pared to a 2.8% gain the Department stores* 1.9 1.4 1.7 1.7 prior week, according to The Discounters 3.3 2.9 3.1 3.3 Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Redbook Index 2.8 2.4 2.6 2.7 Index. *Including chain stores and traditional department stores Month-to-date, May was Source: Johnson Redbook Index up 2.6% versus May of last slowed across the board during the week,” exyear, relative to a target of a 2.7% gain. Month-over-month showed a 0.5% plained Catlin Levis, Redbook analyst. “The sales performance also reflected difficult comparisons gain, relative to a target of a 0.6% gain. “Coming off the Mother’s Day last-minute with last year’s pre-Mother’s Day sales, which shopping on Sunday [May 12], sales and traffic fell a week sooner this year.” HTT

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Macy’s Posts Strong Q1 Home Textiles a Winner CINCINNATI — Home textiles was Sales increased 4.0% to again singled out as among Ma- $6.387 billion, and comparable cy’s strongest merchanstore sales – which indise category performers, clude net sales from along with furniture, durstores open at least ing the department store one full fiscal year as chain’s first quarter. well as online sales Macy’s Internet and at macys.com and omni-channel businessbloomingdales.com es also “continued to fuel — grew by 3.8%. KAREN HOGUET growth,” said cfo Karen Average unit reMacy’s Hoguet during Macy’s tails and transactions earnings call on May 15. were both up — 2.5% Net income for the 13 weeks, and 1.7%, respectively, while ended May 4, rose 20% to $217 units per transaction were down million, and earnings per share slightly, the company noted. HTT were up 28% to 55 cents.

Dillard’s Logs Strong Q1 Profit L ITTLE ROCK , A RK. — Dillard’s department stores produced record first quarter earnings thanks to better margins and cost controls. The home and furniture categories were the weakest performers during the quarter, the company reported. Net income for the 13 weeks ended May 4 rose 23.4% to $117.2 million, or $2.50 per share. Excluding a $4.4 million after-tax credit, net income rose 27% to $112. 8 million, or $2.40 per share. Merchandise gross

margin improved by 110 basis points while operating expenses dropped 20 basis points. Total merchandise sales — excluding the company’s CDI Contractors construction business — rose 1% to $1.53 billion, with comps up 1%. Including CDI, total sales were flat at $1.549 billion. As of May 4, Dillard’s operated 283 department stores and 18 clearance centers as well as its ecommerce operation at dillards.com. HTT

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Wintry Weather Chills Target’s Q1 Results M INNEAPOLIS — Described as “choppy and challenging,” Target’s first quarter disappointed, as net earnings were dealt a harsh blow and sales and comps could not stand up against yearago comparisons. To blame was “one of coldest spring seasons on record, following record warmth a year ago,” noted Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and ceo. The expiration of the payroll tax holiday also caused shoppers to withdraw from spending, he added. Net earnings for the three months dove 28.5% to $498 million, or 77 cents per share. In the U.S. segment, quarterly sales inched up 0.5% to $16.6 billion, but comps were down 0.6%, compared to last year’s 3.5% increase.

By category, the less-discretionary categories that are not as dependent on weather experienced the strongest comps noted Kathryn Tesija, evp, merchandising and supply chain. These included food, health & beauty, and household essentials. Home comps were down in the low single-digit range, on par with apparel. But there were bright spots, including the Nate Berkus collection and Threshold. During the quarter, Target opened its first batch of Canadian units — 24 sites, which collectively generated sales of $86 million in the first quarter with a gross margin rate of 38.4%. The loss before income and taxes was $205 million. The Canadian division generated gross margin of $33 million which was offset

by $238 million in start-up costs and other expenses. Canadian operations reduced Target’s earnings per share by 24 cents in the quarter. Steinhafel noted the new Canadian units experienced “unexpectedly strong surge in sales” and the “mix in sales in home and apparel was higher than we expected.” Target’s digital channel remained strong — and growing — through the first quarter, with sales and traffic on the upswing, “up at a healthy pace,” he said. “Our mobile traffic represented more than 30% of our digital traffic.” The company continues to also expand its urban presence, bringing its total CityTarget store count to six units in four cities to date. HTT

million, with same-store sales down 2.6%. Calvin McDonald, president and ceo, said the company was encouraged by improvements in the soft lines business. “We are continuing to make progress in our transformation, and we believe the growth in apparel and accessories is an indicator that we are on the right track,” he added. “At the same time our rate manage-

TJX HomeGoods HOMEGOODS FROM PAGE 1

When asked if any specific home areas were especially strong, Meyrowitz said strength was across the board. “HomeGoods just has a fabulous mix, and we love the business.” To support the momentum, TJX Cos. has recently expanded branded-product penetration and increased its buying staff. “We have people buying for us all over the world,” she continued. “We do business with over 16,000 vendors and offices all over the world. I don’t think our HomeGoods business is equivalent to anyone else’s. Our sku count is enormous, our differentiation is great, it’s a very spe-

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cial business and it is very exciting, and that is what’s driving this business, driving the margins.” Working against the toughest comparisons it will face in the new fiscal year, TJX Companies generated a strong first-quarter performance that was largely ignited by the home segment. For the quarter ended May 4, HomeGoods posted a 15.7% sales hike to $690 million and a 7.0% comp increase on top of last year’s 9.0% gain. Marmaxx, its sister business in the United States, had a 6.35% sales increase to $4.136 billion. Comps ticked up 1.0% on top of last year’s 8.0% increase. TJX Canada posted a modest

NRF: Import Volume to Slow This Summer

ment initiatives have positively impacted gross margin by 50 basis points, while our focus on controlling costs has reduced expenses by 7.9% compared to the same period last year. Factoring out the gains from the return of the three leases to the landlord last year, we are seeing an overall improvement in our bottom line for the quarter as compared to the first quarter last year. HTT

WASHINGTON. — While import volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected to rise by 3.3% in May over a year ago, the National Retail Federation warned further growth could be stunted by summer’s end at the hands of the sluggish economy. “The weak cargo increases expected over the next few months are consistent with other signs that the economy is slowly improving but show that retailers remain cautious, especially when it comes to stocking their inventories,” explained NRF vp for supply chain and customs policy Jonathan Gold in the most recent monthly Global Port Tracker report, released by NRF and Hackett Associates. “We’re looking at barely 1% of year-over-year growth through the early summer, and August and September are expected to be basically flat even though they’re supposed to be two of the busiest months of the year,” Gold added. Cargo import numbers do not predict retail sales and don’t reflect the value of the merchandise inside the containers. But NRF considers container volume a rough yardstick by which to measure retailers’ expectations.

U.S. ports followed by Global Port Tracker include: Los Angeles/Long Beach, Oakland, Seattle and Tacoma on the West Coast; New York/New Jersey, Hampton Roads, Charleston, Savannah, Port Everglades and Miami on the East Coast; and Houston on the Gulf Coast. Collectively, these ports handled 1.14 million Twentyfoot Equivalent Units (TEUs) in March, the latest month for which after-the-fact numbers are available. That was down 10.9% from February and 8.6% from March 2012. One TEU is one 20-foot cargo container or its equivalent. The first six months of 2013 are expected to total 7.8 million TEU, up 2% from the first half of 2012. The total for 2012 was 15.8 million TEU, up 2.9% from 2011. “Despite the Fed pumping liquidity into the market, consumer confidence still has not turned the corner,” said Ben Hackett, founder of Hackett Associates. “We need to see the economy strengthen in the coming quarters before we can begin to see the threat of a further economic downturn dissipating. Trade will remain at low growth levels until we reach this stage.” HTT

0.8% sales increase to $645 million, but also reported a modest comp decline — down 1.0% compared to last year’s 6.0% comp increase. Total company net income for the quarter grew 8.0% to $453 million, and diluted earnings per share jumped 13% to 62 cents. TJX Cos.’ net sales for the quarter increased 7% to $6.2 billion, while consolidated comparable store sales inched up 2% over last year’s reported 8% increase. “We are very pleased with our first-quarter results, especially as they were achieved over the highest year-over-year comparisons for quarterly comp sales and EPS growth of this year,” Meyrowitz noted.

Looking ahead, the company said in the second quarter it expects diluted earnings per share to be in the range of 61 to 63 cents, which would represent a 9% to 13% increase over last year’s 56 cents per share. TJX estimates consolidated comparable store sales growth of 2% to 3%. For the fiscal year ending Feb. 1, 2014, the company is narrowing its expected range for diluted earnings per share to $2.70 to $2.78 versus $2.55 in fiscal 2013. Farther ahead in TJX Cos.’ sights are loftier goals, Meyrowitz said. “Longer term, we remain very confident in our continued ability to grow sales and profitability as we are well on

the road to being a $40 billionplus company.” The company also thinks it can expand its store count eventually to 3,000 within its existing markets alone, likely more with new markets. These include more urban sectors, for which TJX Cos. is currently developing a new prototype. With respect to HomeGoods’ real estate future, its recent performance has encouraged the company to ante its store-count potential to 825 units, up from the previously estimated 750 stores. “There are about 100 markets where we operate TJ Maxx and Marshalls and no HomeGoods, for example,” Meyrowitz said. HTT

Sears Canada Sees Red Ink in Q1 TORONTO — Despite improvements in the bed, bath, apparel and accessories categories, sales at Sears Canada declined during the first quarter and the retailer swung to a net loss. The net loss for the quarter ended May 4 was $31.2C million, or 31 cents per share, compared to net income in the year ago quarter of $93.1C million, or 91 cents per share. Sales fell 6.6% to $867.1C

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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

5/22/2013 2:59:36 PM


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Home Textiles Today

Poufs d ch

May 27, 2013

News

> hometextilestoday.com

Century 21 Brings Poufs Back to Campus

POUFS FROM PAGE 1

NEW YORK – Century 21, regional eight-unit department store chain in the New York/New Jersey area, is taking

“Poufs can seamlessly go from room to room to outdoors. They have become a nice staple in the home textiles category along with [decorative] pillows because of their flexibility and affordability.” Building on that notion, Gilt Groupe’s vp, divisional merchandise manager, Alex Ogof, described the retailer’s pouf business as “meant to be a multiple purchase because they are fantastic pieces that coordinate with any interior.” Recognizing that poufs have rapidly become one of its top-selling product categories in home, Gilt Groupe is on the brink of unveiling a new in-house collection of poufs under its Gilt Home Collection. “We are going after poufs in private label,” Ogof told HTT. Gilt Groupe’s creative director of home, Tom Delavan, is working with “one of the top domestic suppliers in the marketplace” to design and produce “a unique, hip, fresh pouf assortment” that will launch before the end of June, said Ogof. The poufs are the latest addition to the Gilt Home Collection, the online membership retailer’s exclusive house-branded line that launched in fall 2012 with furniture, rugs and decorative pillows. “Tom and his team have been designing all year to create new products, using new fabrics and designs, so that this summer we can roll out the poufs, and then in the fall we can come out with our second collection for Gilt Home,” Ogof said. Details are still in the works, but Ogof estimated that the private label pouf program will span two to three sizes and shapes of poufs, and styles that will be available across five to six colorways each. “All of the products [in Gilt Home Collection] work together but not as direct matches. They are meant to mix and match so that the customer can create her own look with our pieces,” he added. Working on a similar effort is design-driven Fab, which includes in its existing pouf line a foam Andy Warhol Brillo Box pouf, created by Quinze & Milan via Fab’s collaboration with The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Josephine Minutillo, Fab’s director of merchandising, said the flash retailer is now “developing our own Fabbranded line of poufs” for launch later at a later date. Poufs are a popular product category for Fab, which has successfully sold poufs “in all kinds of fabrics, includ-

its back-to-campus season to new fashion lengths with the addition of poufs to the assortment. Set to launch in mid summer, the retailer’s BTC pouf offering will encompass many novelty styles, including peace signs and other trendy design themes poplar among the 16-to-24 age set, Stuart Weiss, dmm, linens, told HTT. Additionally, Century 21 will also incorporate some Bohemian-type looks in the mix, based on customers’ demands for the retailer’s original pouf offering that rolled out about a year ago. Weiss said the trend began when Century 21 added kantha-type throws from India. “They were a hit right away, so we expanded on that Bohemian-type look in throw pillows and draperies, and then the next extension were the poufs,” he explained. He said Century 21 shoppers have taken to its poufs because of their functional yet fashionable attributes. “They see that they don’t have to break the bank. They can get a couple of eclectic or sophisticated poufs, depending on their taste, and with them they can change room without a third mortgage,” Weiss said. “Poufs give a quick, fresh look and they can make people go ‘Wow’ when they walk into a room, and they only have to spend very little money.” He would not say what retail price point Century 21’s poufs sell at best, but he did offer insight into changes in price in its sister category, dec pillows. “Five years ago, the average dec pillow sold for $9.99. Today, they average is $20 to $25,” Weiss said. “People want nicer goods these days and they are willing to pay a little more. They want feather filled, instead of 16-inch they want a 20-inch square, instead of knife edge they want cord.”

Andy Warhol Brillo Box by Quinze & Milan, offered by Fab (via its collaboration with The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts).

ing leather,” Minutillo said. “But we have some great chunky knit ones coming up.” Since Fab opened its online doors in June 2011, poufs have been part of the merchandise offering, not only because they are affordable and offer “a great way to add a pop of color to a space, and color is what Fab is all about,” but also because poufs are easy to ship. “[Ottomans/poufs] are fun and flexible and can be used in a variety of ways and can move around without effort,” she added. “This is not a purchase that requires a lot of deliberation, but one that instantly updates a space.” As Fab puts it in its product verbiage, poufs are “packed with potential” in terms of their use inside and outdoors. Interior designer and luxury home furnishings retailer Barclay Butera has long seen the benefits of pieces like poufs in his decorating and product design, which is why he includes a variety of looks in the category in his own shops as well as in his branded program with rug house Nourison. “Traditional seating layouts can always benefit from a versatile ottoman or a fun storage cube,” he told HTT. “I love having a set floor plan, then adding pieces that can completely reconfigure the space to accommodate guests. Our ottomans are the perfect extra seating for last minutes guests and kids hovering around the television or playing video games.” Butera said his hide skin multi-colored cubes made Rizzy Home

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by Nourison, which also produces his line of area rugs, “serve as fabulous, great looking pieces to store throws, board games, electronic ‘clickers’ [remote controls] whatever you want, handy but out of sight.” HauteLook is also revving up for an upcoming launch of new pouf products in June. The Nordstrom-owned flash sale retailer is set to unveil a new and exclusive line of poufs as part of the company’s private label strategy in its home department. Working with a specific group of vendor partners for the program, HauteLook’s soon-to-come offerings will be merchandised as open stock but will work with also-new decorative pillow styles as mix-and-match coordinates, Hielscher said. The collection will include “some exclusive shapes and patterns of poufs,” she continued. “It’s a pouf focus for us, and it will include a cross range of different fabrics and trends, solids, fabulous constructions.” Hielscher noted that some of the program’s details are “still being fleshed out” before the launch this summer. But she said HauteLook is in the process of performing quality and product performance tests to finalize the final offering. “We are testing them now to be sure we have the very best in quality. We want to be sure our customers can sit on them, that they won’t fall off, that the poufs we select are comfortable, that they have the right fill, and that they can endure the test of time,” she explained. “Once we lock that down, we have a full range of fabSoftline Home Fashions

5/22/2013 5:25:58 PM


News

> hometextilestoday.com

May 27, 2013

21

Home Textiles Today

Jaipur Surya, as offered by ideeli

rics to offer a mix-and-match collection that is right for our customer.” Looks will include botanicals, abstracts, solids, as well as several indoor/outdoor varieties and even a back-tocampus grouping for the fashion-conscious college set. Some of the best pouf sources for these and other like retailers are rug vendors, many of whom lately have expanded their assortment to include more decorative accessories. Among the favorites are Surya, Momeni and Majestic Home Goods as well as Jaipur and Rizzy Home, along with several others. “Surya has done a great job of really having a lifestyle look,” noted Janee Ries, svp/dmm, merchandising, New York-based flash sale retailer ideeli. “It’s not just the rug. They have artwork, furniture, pillows and poufs in a range of looks. Momeni also does a good job with its more oneof-a-kind pouf styles, they are a little more traditional than contemporary, which is good for us.” Just as ideeli looks to appeal to younger tastes among first-time apartment dwellers, the retailer also courts more traditional consumers so that its mix serves a broad gamut of shoppers. That effort extends throughout its home offering, including poufs, Ries noted. “What is really working for us is incorporating poufs in our multi events or curated events to help us tell specific stories meant to inspire our members to decorate,” explained Stephanie Crepea, textiles, furniture, lighting, and beauty buyer for ideeli. “We’re calling out key trends in the home market, calling out different ways to accessorize the home, and including poufs in that story has really worked for us.” Ries added that home has consistently been a strong business for ideeli, and as the market demands and Momeni

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responds to new and innovative products, including poufs, the flash sale retailer will react with new and expanded offerings. On average, poufs retail between $45 and $200 at flash sale retailers. But some hit more promotional as well as far higher ticket levels. To meet these and other retailers’ needs for the income spectrum of shoppers, suppliers are expanding their assortments almost constantly. Surya recently debuted its first upholstered accent furniture collection during the April High Point Market. A natural extension of the brand’s popular pouf collection, the 50-plus piece series’ components — spanning ottomans, benches and foot stools — are handmade in India and are positioned to retail on the loftier side, from $199 to $1,499. For Jaipur, poufs “are playing a big role,” said Asha Chaudhary, president and ceo. “It’s a new investment category for us, and going forward poufs will continue to play a huge role in our growing assortment as an extremely versatile room accessory that blends and accents our other categories.” Rizzy Home is expanding its pouf-and-pillow combos that marry to rugs “for a whole lifestyle scene for furniture store customers,” said vp Mark Ferullo. “And from there, we’re getting into different shapes and constructions, and we’ll play off the old days when bean bags were so popular,” he added. “Poufs are the next generation of the dec pillow, and we’re seeing it grow into a nice business for us.” Outside the rug suppliers, other home textiles suppliers are quickly discovering the benefits of poufs. Domestic curtain, dec pillow and fabric house Softline got into the pouf business almost accidentally. As Jason Carr, co-founder and president, explained to Missoni, offered by Gilt Groupe

HTT: “We sell fabrics by yard, and sometimes we have some extra inventory. We needed to find ways to clear that inventory, so decided to make some fabrics into pillows and from there, into poufs.” The company started out by showing samples during market. “They were well received,” Carr said, “so we went to work looking for a domestic foam supplier so that we would be able to make them here.” The new business segment began to grow rapidly, and Softline has responded by expanding its offerings continually into new constructions and new styles. Outdoor varieties, made with Sunbrella-branded, UV-resistant fabrics have been especially popular for the company, as have the different sizes — 16-by-16 squares, 16-by-16 cylinders, and 24-by-12 round lounge beads. Carr said all of Softline’s poufs coordinate with the company’s curtains and other accessories, and the sweet retail spot has been in the $100 range. When Softline previewed its first poufs, one retailer placed them in many of its stores, Carr said. “From there, we were pushed to take poufs more seriously. Then we had a couple more retailers who wanted them. And now, we’ve had an overwhelming response to our poufs. It’s a real growth category for us going forward.” HTT Barclay Butera Collection, offered by Nourison

5/22/2013 5:26:20 PM


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Home Textiles Today

May 27, 2013

News

> hometextilestoday.com

Showtime Touts New Exhibitors HIGH POINT, N.C. — The Showtime fabric fair sponsored by the ITMA is welcoming eight new exhibitors and planning a variety of events for the show, which takes place here June 2-5. The newest members of the International Textile Market Association, which produces Showtime, include: • Bella-Dura Fabrics, producer of high-end performance fabric for use indoors and outdoors. Showing location SMS 1-466; • CeCe Design Group, a solor line management and trend consultant. Showing location SMS 1-602; • Crypton Fabrics, producer of moisture-resistant and easyto-clean fabrics. Showing location MSTT, 2nd Floor; • Euroleather Inc., produc-

er of upholstery leather. Showing location SMS 1-318; • Ingrid and Audrey, a new fabric company based in Los Angeles that offers eco-friendly fabric and wall coverings made in America. Showing location SMS 1-443; • Novit a Industries, Inc. Showing location SMS 1-SMS 1-918; • Sandown & Bourne, which is relaunching the Sandown & Bourne brand in the USA with a new range of prints and wovens created in England. Showing location SMS 1-428; • Textile Creations Inc., a fabric wholesale company specializing in providing exclusive and artistic textiles to independent quilt shops, fabric stores and manufacturers. Showing location SMS 1-742

The 47th Showtime market will also include social and educational events. On opening day, June 2, the International Market Centers will host the “International Pavilion at Showtime” reception at 4 p.m. in the Suites at Market Square. The event will welcome exhibitors from India, Taiwan, and China. Showtime’s popular “Runway Fashion Show” will take place June 3 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Suites at Market Square. Participating sponsors include DeLeo Textiles, Glen Raven Custom Fabrics-Sunbrella, High 5, Home Secrets, Keystone Weaving Mills, Inc., P. Kaufmann Fabrics, and Valdese Weavers. Models will show off clothing made from the sponsors’ fabrics by the University of North Carolina - Greensboro’s Threads

Department. The event will also include food and drink. In addition, the International Market Centers will hold “Suite Libations” each evening from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. throughout the Suites at Market Square. The show’s series of education events will take place on the top floor of the Suites at Market Square 1-200 / 1-300 aisles. They include: • “US Market Trends and Color Direction for 2013-2014” sponsored by Furniture/Today and Home Textiles Today on June 3 at 8:30 a.m. • Made in USA panel discussion hosted by Fabrics & Furnishings International on June 3 from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. To RSVP email cmorsell@itmashowtime. com. • “Inspirations for Swarovs-

ki Elements: Spring/Summer 2014” on June 3 at 10 a.m. and June 4 at 2 p.m. • Tr e n d P u l s e ’s “ R e t a i l Round-Up: What you need to know for Spring Home Interiors” and Design Options: “The West Coast Point of View on Color and Home trends for Fall 2014” on June 3 at noon and June 4 at 10 a.m. • “Pinterest, The New Retail Therapy” presented by web4retail on June 3 at 2 p.m. and on June 4 at noon. The next Showtime takes place Dec. 8-11, 2013, with the following fair June 1-4, 2014. For further information about Showtime, ITMA, and ITMA Educational Foundation visit www.Showtime-Market.com, email info@itmashowtime.com, or call (336) 885-6842. HTT

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1271 Avenue of the Americas, 17th floor New York, NY 10020 Tel: (917) 934-2852; Fax: (646) 365-2307 www.hometextilestoday.com www.facebook.com/httmag EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Jennifer Marks 10 Ocean Blvd #8B Atlantic Highlands, N.J. 07716 (732) 204-2012 | jnegley@hometextilestoday.com PUBLISHER/EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Warren Shoulberg (917) 934-2876 | wshoulberg@hometextilestoday.com SENIOR EDITOR Cecile B. Corral 428 Bianca Ave. Coral Gables, FL 33146 (305) 661-7493 | cbcorral@aol.com MANAGING EDITOR Julie Murphy (917) 934-2858 | jmurphy@hometextilestoday.com CONTRIBUTING GRAPHIC ARTIST Desiree Nunez (917) 934-2862 | dnunez@giftsanddec.com DIRECTOR OF MARKET RESEARCH Dana French (336) 605-1091 | dfrench@sandowmedia.com ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER, ACCOUNT MANAGER SOUTH/EAST/CHINA Jeff Reeves (336) 605-1009 | jreeves@hometextilestoday.com ACCOUNT MANAGER NORTHEAST/MIDWEST/ WEST COAST/CANADA Mary McLoughlin (917) 934-2852 | mmcloughlin@hometextilestoday.com CLASSIFIED AD SALES Spencer Whittle (336) 605-1027 swhittle@sandowmedia.com Karen Hancock (336) 605-1047 khancock@sandowmedia.com MANAGER, EUROPE Mirek Kraczkowski Tel: 48 22 401 70 01; Fax: 48 22 401 70 16 | kraczko@aol.com MANAGER, INDIA Kaushal Shah Cell: 91-9821715431; Tel: 91 22 2305 9305/6/7 Kaushal@kaushals.com PRODUCTION MANAGER Rich Lamb Tel: (336) 605-1074; Fax: (336) 605-1143 | rlamb@sandowmedia.com DIRECTOR, WEB OPERATIONS Chris Schultz | (336) 605-1076 | cschultz@sandowmedia.com MANAGER, CLIENT SERVICES, WEB ADVERTISING Dan Sage | (336) 605-1080 | dsage@sandowmedia.com E-MEDIA PROJECT MANAGER Missy Axe | (336) 605-1005 | maxe@sandowmedia.com DIRECTOR OF AUDIENCE MARKETING Allison Ternes (704) 573-9007 | aternes@sandowmedia.com PRESIDENT, FURNITURE TODAY GROUP Kevin Castellani (336) 605-1034 | kcastellani@sandowmedia.com FOUNDING EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Carole Sloan 1979-2011

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ShopNBC Changes Identity to ShopHQ MINNEAPOLIS — ShopHQ is the new name for multichannel electronic retailer ValueVision Media Inc.’s ShopNBC brand. The company made the announcement last week before releasing its first quarter results, ShopHQ can be accessed online at its newly dubbed website, www.shophq.com. ValueVision Media has been operating under the ShopNBC brand since June 2001. The current license agreement expires Jan. 31. A variety of on-air marketing promotions are planned over the remainder of the year to educate viewers about the transition. “The ShopHQ brand clearly communicates to current and potential customers that we aim to be their place for shopping, wherever they are and whenever they need us – on TV or online and across a broad array of merchandise categories,” said Keith Stewart, ValueVision ceo. “ The ShopHQ brand will maintain the same multichannel electronic retail model as its predecessor, with a focus on five core product categories: Jewelry & Watches; Fashion & Accessories; Home & Consumer Electronics; and Health, Beauty & Fitness. HTT

Stein Mart Home Hits Another Home Run in First Quarter JACKSONVILLE, FLA. — Aided by ongoing strength in sales for its linens and other home categories coupled with an 8.0% comp in April, Stein Mart was able to offset challenges cause by prolonged winter weather conditions and the Easter holiday calendar shift during its first quarter. The off-price mid-tier department store chain, with 262 units, enjoyed a 36% jump in net income to $14.7

million, or 33 cents per diluted share. Total sales increased 3.8% to $321.4 million, and comparable store sales increased 1.2%. “Our strong performance in home continues to carry over from last year, led by top of bed, dec pillows and sheets, particularly in bold colors,” said Greg Kleffner, evp of finance and cfo. Added Jay Stein, ceo: “I don’t think there is a retailer out there who has

seen the linens [sales] increases that we are, bar none. It’s been successful.” Kleffner noted home comps are outperforming the chain’s. Other results from the quarter include: a gross profit increase to $97.9 million, or 30.5% of sales, from $91.9 million, or 29.7% of sales last year; and higher inventories – $278.4 million versus $262.8 million a year ago – to support higher sales. HTT

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ValueVision Racks up a Strong Q1 M INNEAPOLIS — Led by significant improvements in its home & consumer electronics category as well as strong results in its fashion & accessories segment, multichannel electronic retailer ValueVision/ShopNBC churned double-digit sales increases during its first quarter. ValueVision Media Inc., which operated under the ShopNBC brand

until this week when the company change this name to ShopHQ, posted an 11% net sales increase to $151.4 million. Net income reached $1.0 million, or 2 cents per share, a shift to the plus side from the company’s yearago Q1 net loss of $8.7 million, or 18 cents per share. Net shipped units jumped 12% to

nearly 1.5 million, refl ecting “continued improvements to our merchandise mix and a modest decline in average price points,” the company said. Internet sales penetration increased 30 basis points to 46.2%. Mobile transaction volume represented 23% of Internet sales compared to 13% last year. HTT

5/23/2013 4:02:08 PM


We didn’t sell 100,000,000 pillows to retailers last year, but…….

Suppliers did buy 100,000,000 of our pillow shells

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Home Textiles Today May 27th Issue