OPERATIONS

Body Central Corp. names three directors

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Jacksonville, Fla. — Body Central Corp. has appointed three new directors effective July 31.

Bryan Eshelman is COO of Aldo Group in Montreal; prior to Aldo, he was the executive VP and chief supply chain officer at Charming Shoppes.

Folline Cullen is a turnaround specialist with Educate Online who has overseen the Sylvan Learning spinoff; she was previously the CFO of Wall Street International, a global brand in English instruction.

Ben Rosenfeld is VP Store Operations, Retail and Outlet at Kenneth Cole Productions. He has held management positions at Lacoste, Charlotte Russe and Express.

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News

Nordstrom acquires personalized clothing service for men

BY CSA STAFF

Nordstrom has entered into an agreement to acquire Trunk Club, a personalized clothing service for men.

Trunk Club delivers a stylist service that combines the convenience of online with a high-touch, personalized shopping experience. Nordstrom plans to leverage the acquisition to offer superior customer service and a seamless shopping experience.

"What Trunk Club is doing in the personal styling space is a natural extension of our core business," said Erik Nordstrom, president of Nordstrom Direct. "This acquisition is reflective of how we want to move quickly to evolve with customers by finding more ways to deliver a great shopping experience. One of the pillars of our long-term growth strategy is to integrate the online and offline customer experience, and the personal styling space is a great example of how these two worlds are coming together. We view this investment as complementary to our own business and our efforts to better serve customers."

"Nordstrom is stellar at many of the things we aim to improve on to offer our members the best possible service: inventory management, planning and logistics are great examples. We knew that a partnership with the best-in-class retailer could significantly enhance our member experience and we are excited to have found a company that is such a natural fit with our culture and approach to customer experience," Trunk Club CEO Brian Spaly said.

Trunk Club has 250 personal stylists that work one-on-one with members to help them hand-select merchandise that is then shipped to them. Customers keep what they like and return the rest free. There is no membership fee, no obligations and no commitments.

Trunk Club offers a full suite of solutions, from day to day ready-to-wear basics to high-end custom garments. Customers can seamlessly access the service across the Web, mobile and in-store, with showrooms in Chicago, Dallas and Washington, D.C., and a fourth opening in Los Angeles next month, where they can meet face-to-face with their stylists.

Trunk Club will continue to operate independently and focus on its core business while leveraging Nordstrom’s capabilities and resources to scale its business. It will be managed by its current leadership team and remain headquartered in Chicago. The transaction is subject to closing conditions, including customary regulatory and stockholder approvals, and is expected to close in the third quarter of 2014. Nordstrom will provide additional details of the transaction on its upcoming earnings conference call August 14. Guggenheim Securities, LLC is acting as financial adviser to Nordstrom; Paul Hastings LLP and Lane Powell PC are acting as its counsel. Goodwin Proctor LLP is acting as counsel to Trunk Club.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Survey: Consumers like Firefly, won’t buy Amazon Fire

BY Dan Berthiaume

Seattle – Consumers like the Firefly feature that lets users of the Amazon Fire phone scan objects to obtain information and perform instant purchase on Amazon.com, but not enough to switch from their current phones to Amazon Fire. According to a survey of 53 consumers from UserTesting, 84% chose Firefly as their number one or two favorite feature of Amazon Fire.

Seventy percent ranked Firefly a 4 or 5 for ease-of-use (out of 5), and 39 of 53 respondents said they would use the feature again. Yet more than half of participants said they would keep their phone and not buy the Fire Phone.

The feature didn’t work for every product tested, but when it did users said they thought it was useful. Users got it to work easily with objects with clear, recognizable logos, but it struggled with other things. Users said they can see the value of the product, especially once the database is even more robust.

Other findings include that the Carousel navigation feature was least easy to use with 40% giving it a 1 or 2 (out of 5), and least favorite with 81% ranking it their third or fourth favorite feature. The MayDay customer help feature high ease-of-use scores with 32% ranking it a 5 (out of 5), but only 13 people out of the 53 said they would use this feature again.

In addition, in most contexts (home screen, with the display of apps, in maps) users said they thought dynamic perspective was "cool" but a little "gimmicky" and not especially useful. The exception was games, where they really liked it. The auto-scroll feature was good in theory, but didn’t work well in reality (not responsive enough).

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