REAL ESTATE

Designer Shoe Warehouse in Canada debut with two stores

BY Marianne Wilson

Toronto — Town Shoes Limited announced the opening of its first two DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse locations in Canada. DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse will open at Heartland Centre in Mississauga and Woodland Hills in Newmarket, Ontario, on Aug. 7.

The two new Canadian retail locations, each approximately 20,000 sq. ft. will make them the largest shoe stores in the country.

Town Shoes Limited will also launch a unique loyalty program that will allow customers to earn and redeem points and rewards at all Town Shoes, The Shoe Company, Shoe Warehouse and DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse locations in Canada.

With nearly 200 locations across Canada, Town Shoes Limited is the largest branded footwear retailer in Canada. Town Shoes Limited is comprised of five brands: Town Shoes, The Shoe Company, Shoe Warehouse, Sterling and now DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse Canada.

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OPERATIONS

Abercrombie’s exec VP of stores to lead diversity efforts

BY Marianne Wilson

New Albany, Ohio — Abercrombie & Fitch has reorganized its Diversity & Inclusion structure. Todd Corley, who has led the efforts since 2004, is leaving to launch the TAPO Institute, which will focus on inclusive leadership based on “principles of transparency, authenticity, persistence, and optimism,” Abercrombie said.

Assuming responsibility for oversight of Diversity & Inclusion is Amy Zehrer, the company’s executive VP of stores. She will assume responsibility for all home office efforts and the company’s approximately 100,000 global store associates.

"As chief diversity officer, Todd Corley created and implemented a transformational framework for our D&I efforts and we are thankful for everything he has contributed over his ten years with A&F," said Amy Zehrer. "We will further enhance the great work that has already been completed under Todd’s leadership, such as our stores going from less than ten percent non-white associates to over 50% today.”

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: June events curtail shopper traffic

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Francisco – Shopper traffic declined 9% in June, compared to the same month the previous year, as vacations, holidays, and record-breaking World Cup viewership cannibalized time spent on shopping-related activities. According to data from in-store analytics provider Euclid, despite the reduced traffic, high levels of consumer confidence boosted shoppers’ spending habits with .2% growth year-over-year in general merchandise, apparel, furniture and other (GAFO) retail sales

In addition, Euclid reported 4% growth year-over-year in clothing and apparel sales and 1% growth year-over-year in general merchandise sales. Storefront conversion was up slightly as June 2014 remained more promotional than the previous June, driven by competition and relatively high inventories. Average duration increased 8% from the previous year. June realized pent up demand from May as disposable income continued to grow and consumer confidence rose. Summer sales and nicer weather also contributed to the improvement.

However, visits decreased slightly year-over-year due to the same factors that affected traffic, but this trend was outweighed by the benefit of higher engagement. The best day of June was Monday, June 2, with outperformance across all metrics except for active repeat ratio as the month started with a flurry of activity. Not surprisingly, Sunday, June 15 (Father’s Day) was the worst shopping day of the month. The lowest level of traffic and low storefront conversion were experienced as vacations and family activities cannibalized mall visits.

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