Disney Store opens new prototype
New York City Disney Store on Tuesday debuted its long-awaited new prototype, at The Shops at Montebello, in Montebello, Calif. Interactive technology plays a key role in the new design, whose features include a child-sized Disney Princess Castle, complete with a “magic mirror” in which a Disney Princess appears to tell a story. The Montebello store marks the first of 20 newly designed Disney Store locations that will open across major markets in the United States and Europe in 2010.
“Disney is setting a new standard for the specialty retail category by integrating robust technology and creative store planning to make each visit customizable and that much more memorable,” Jim Fielding, president of Disney Stores Worldwide, said in a statement. “This is truly an immersive, one-of-a-kind retail experience for children and families that only Disney could deliver.”
Each store will have a Disney Store Theater that will show animated and other short-form features. Customers can pick from a selection of pre-loaded content that will be updated regularly and can view classic and new Disney entertainment, sneak-peek previews, music videos and more. The theater will also serve for special in-store events such as reading time, scavenger hunts and more.
Additional features include the Disney•Pixar “Cars”-branded Ridemakerz attraction, an immersive car building and customizing experience. Launching with three favorite “Cars” characters from Disney’s animated “Cars” movie, fans use tools to assemble their car, which can be customized with a wide selection of rims, side pipes, hoods scoops, blown engines, spoilers and many more accessories
The prototype also features an interactive kiosk with touch screen, which gives users the ability to navigate a 3-D view of all Disney Store and DisneyStore.com products and discover the latest Disney Store news via video clips, articles, and social media feeds. The application allows the Disney Store to share its news to customers, who can then share information and in-store events via email, Twitter and Facebook.
The newly designed Disney Store is scheduled to open this year in The Shops at Mission Viejo in Mission Viejo, Calif.; North State Street in Chicago (Block 37 Complex); Freehold Raceway Mall in Freehold, N.J.; and NorthPark Center in Dallas.
Other locations to feature the new Disney Store design opening this year include: Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, N.Y.; Santa Monica Place in Santa Monica, Calif.; International Plaza in Tampa, Fla.; Fashion Valley in San Diego; Disney Store in Union Square in San Francisco; and a two-story Disney Store in Times Square in November.
Shopko names divisional VP women’s apparel
GREEN BAY, Wis. Shopko announced that Ann Kasper has been appointed divisional VP, divisional merchandise manager for women’s apparel.
Kasper joins Shopko from women’s apparel and accessories retailer, Coldwater Creek, where she held the position of VP merchandising catalog/web. Prior to Coldwater Creek, Kasper developed and implemented a number of international in-store retail shop concepts for Eileen Fisher and Diane Von Furstenberg. She also held executive positions with a number of privately-held apparel companies.
W. Paul Jones, president, chairman and CEO of Shopko, said, “Ann’s solid retail knowledge and merchandising leadership skills will provide Shopko with incredible growth opportunities; while her strong commitment to branding and the overall customer experience reflects Shopko’s commitment to meeting the diverse needs of our customers from fashion to quality to value. We welcome her to Shopko.”
B&N reports 4Q loss
NEW YORK Barnes & Noble reported that total sales for the fourth quarter were $1.3 billion, a 19% increase from the thirteen weeks ended May 2, 2009. Barnes & Noble.com sales increased 51% to $141 million for the quarter, as compared to the period one year ago. Barnes & Noble store sales decreased 3% to $962 million, with comparable-store sales decreasing 3.1% for the quarter, in-line with guidance of a comparable-store sales decline between 2% and 4%.
For the fourth quarter, the company reported a consolidated net loss of $32 million, or 58 cents per share. Included in these results is a benefit of 25 cents per share resulting from the release of tax reserves pursuant to the completion of tax examinations. The results also include an after-tax benefit of 7 cents per share, resulting from a more favorable physical inventory shortage rate than previously forecasted. Excluding both of these benefits, the fourth quarter net loss was 89 cents per share. This loss was in-line with previously issued guidance of 85 cents to $1.15 per share, the company reported.
Total sales for the full year were $5.8 billion. Barnes & Noble.com sales increased 24% to $573 million for the year, as compared with the 12-month period ended May 2, 2009. Barnes & Noble store sales were $4.3 billion, with comparable-store sales decreasing 4.8% for the year.
Consolidated net earnings were $36.7 million, or 63 cents per share. Excluding the tax benefits noted above, consolidated net earnings would have been 39 cents per share, as compared with guidance of 23 cents to 53 cents per share, the company said.
In fiscal 2011, Barnes & Noble said it expects its consolidated sales to increase 20% to 25%. Barnes & Noble.com comparable sales are expected to increase by approximately 75% to $1 billion. Barnes & Noble comparable-store sales are expected to be in a range of flat to an increase of 3%.
For the company’s fiscal 2011 first quarter ending July 31, 2010, Barnes & Noble.com comparable sales are expected to increase 30% to 50%. Barnes & Noble comparable-store sales are expected to be in a range of flat to an increase of 3%. First quarter net loss per share is expected to be in a range of 85 cents to $1.15.