Birchbox
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Beauty start-up turns profitable

BY 1

Birchbox is no longer in the red.

The online subscription beauty retailer has achieved profitability, MediaPost reported, and is returning to television advertising with a spot that speaks to the joy the company’s monthly beauty box brings to its customers.

Founded in 2010, Birchbox had a tough 2016 during which it cut costs and laid off staff. But investments in technology and automation have helped it turn a corner.

Birchbox recently opened its second brick-and-mortar store, in Paris, where it had previously operated several successful pop-ups. (The first Birchbox store opened in 2014, in downtown Manhattan.) France is the brand’s biggest market in Europe.

“Retail has proven to be a powerful element of the Birchbox experience, and our stores helps consumers really understand the Birchbox personality,” Amanda Tolleson, head of marketing, told MediaPost. Customers who shop in our store have a three-times higher lifetime value with us, and our physical presence has helped open the door to working with a number of new brand partners.”

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EasternOutfitters
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British retailer buys bankrupt U.S. chain

BY Marianne Wilson

Britain's largest sporting goods retailer is extending its presence in the United States.

Sports Direct International Plc has bought Eastern Outfitters, parent company of Bob’s Stores and Eastern Mountain Outfitters. Sports Direct, which operates some 700 stores in the U.K. and continental Europe, has been wanting to expand in the United States. Last year, it bid for the intellectual property of Sports Authority, but lost out to Dick's Sporting Goods.

Eastern Outfitters, which operates about 90 stores, filed for bankruptcy protection in February

In addition to its namesake retail stores, Sports Direct has a portfolio of fitness, fashion and sports brands that include Everlast, No Fear and LA Gear. In February, it took an 11% stake in apparel brand French Connection. The company is under pressure to make acquisitions to boost profits to meet its growth targets, according to a report by The Guardian.

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menswherehouse
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Two menswear brands step up digital personalization

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Men’s Wearhouse and Jos. A. Bank are not just enhancing customer experiences across their websites — they are personalizing them.

Tailored Brands is partnering with Certona to provide online shoppers across its Men’s Wearhouse and Jos. A. Bank divisions with a highly personalized digital experience — one very similar to those they are used to during in-store visits. This is a strategic move as digital shoppers expect a seamless and cohesive individualized shopping experience — even as they move across multiple channels and touchpoints.

Using Certona’s personalization solutions, Tailored Brands can leverage deep shopper insights, real-time context and predictive analytics to deliver more relevant experiences to each individual shopper as they engage with the brand online and via mobile. Major aspects of the shopper experience journey, from the homepage to checkout, will be dynamically personalized. Shoppers will also have access to new capabilities, including visual search and navigation and product finder capabilities.

“At Men’s Wearhouse and Jos. A. Bank, our customers receive a one-of-a-kind shopping experience that prioritizes convenience and personal style preferences,” said Samantha Lee, VP of site management and customer experience of Tailored Brands. “We see omnichannel personalization as a strategy for evolving the way our customers engage with our brands.”

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