REAL ESTATE

American Girl to expand to Canada via in-store boutiques

BY Staff Writer

Middletown, Wis. — American Girl, a division of Mattel, announced its first expansion outside the United States, with plans to open two experiential in-store boutiques in partnership with Indigo Books & Music Inc., Canada’s largest book, gift, and specialty retailer.

Opening in spring 2014, the new American Girl retail stores will be located in Indigo’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre, Toronto, and Robson Street, Vancouver.

“For nearly 30 years, American Girl has been celebrating and encouraging girls through age-appropriate dolls, books, and experiences,” said Jean McKenzie, executive VP of American Girl. “Now, for the first time, we are thrilled to take the American Girl experience beyond the United States and inspire a whole new group of girls to achieve their personal best. We’re equally excited about partnering with such a well-established and creative company like Indigo.”

In addition to the brand’s signature doll lines, the Indigo American Girl store-in-store boutiques will carry Dress Like Your Doll girl-sized clothing and a variety of best-selling American Girl books. Fans can also treat their dolls to a new hairstyle or ear piercing in the Doll Hair Salon and enjoy free girl-and-mom-friendly events and programs offered throughout the year.

“I’ve loved American Girl since its inception,” said Indigo’s founder and CEO, Heather Reisman. “My daughters grew up with American Girl. My granddaughters are growing up with American Girl. We at Indigo are thrilled to be bringing this iconic and inspired brand to Canada.”

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

HSN launching multi-platform holiday campaign

BY Marianne Wilson

St. Petersburg, Fla. — HSN (HSNi) is leveraging the cumulative power of its portfolio of leading lifestyle brands, which include HSN, Frontgate and Ballard Designs, to launch More the Merrier, a multi-platform holiday campaign. The campaign will include digital gift guides; special promotional offers, contests and sweepstakes.

As part of the campaign, HSN will host its biggest holiday sweepstakes ever, a nine-week, multi-platform program that will offer consumers the chance to win an array of prizes through the HSN Arcade gaming portal on HSN.com or by using their tablet or smartphone via HSN Mobile.

Frontgate’s popular annual “Inspire Holiday Pinterest Challenge” will return again this year, on Nov. 15, with pinners describing their most beautiful Christmas celebration ever through pictures posted on the popular social site. Frontgate customers will get to cast their vote for top Pinterest boards with the top 10 pinners receiving Frontgate gift cards to make their holidays even brighter.

In conjunction with Southern Living magazine, Ballard Designs is hosting The Ultimate Holiday Hostess Sweepstakes now through Dec. 31. Holiday shoppers can enter for a chance to win $10,000 in merchandise and decorate the party of their dreams.

Ballard Designs, Frontgate, Grandin Road, Chasing Fireflies, Garnet Hill, Improvements, HSN and TravelSmith are collaborating to create the ultimate More the Merrier holiday Pinterest board with products pinned from each of the brands.


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News

Quantum Retail bolsters professional services with new VP

BY CSA STAFF

Quantum Retail Technology, a retail-focused supply chain management and inventory optimization software solutions provider, has named Mark Halverson as the company’s VP of professional services.

Halverson will oversee the full range of Quantum Retail’s client program management, solution deployment and delivery, support and management of client partnerships during the implementation cycles.

"Mark’s considerable expertise enables us to continue to broaden our service offerings while ensuring that we continue to deliver the industry’s highest standard of support to Quantum’s clients," said Quantum Retail’s CEO Steve Buege. "Quantum’s solutions drive millions of decisions for our clients every day and as we continue our growth and expand our product offerings we are confident that the addition of Mark’s expertise will ensure we are prepared to exceed our client’s expectations."

Halverson has led service organizations with both emerging and Fortune 100 technology companies. Most recently, he served as a principal at IFC Ironworks Consulting, a $1 billion global advisory and technology consulting firm. Prior to that, Halverson managed client partner-services for Microsoft managing the service deliverables for Microsoft’s Fortune 50 clients, and has held senior leadership positions at Oracle, Forte Software and Fujitsu.

"Quantum Retail continues to play an expanding role of influence for successful retailers managing their supply chains on a global basis," said Halverson. "I am excited to be joining at such a pivotal time in Quantum’s growth and partnering with our clients as we lead the development of innovative programs and service offerings to an increasingly dynamic retail space."

Halverson has a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. He is also a board member at TeamQuest Corporation.

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