MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Entrepreneur launches shoe vending machine in Las Vegas

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Las Vegas — A resident of Las Vegas has launched a shoe vending machine, according to the Las Vegas Business Press. The business was born of a need to change out of high heels and into more comfortable footwear.

Ashley Ross launched Rollasole, a vending machine that dispenses comfortable flats. MGM Resorts International sells the shoes in several of its retail outlets in its Las Vegas resorts. And the shoes can be purchased in stores at Wynn Las Vegas and The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas as well.

Rollasole shoes also are provided in guest rooms at Caesars Palace’s boutique Nobu Hotel.

Ross’ company has two vending machines at the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood; two at the Grand Canal Shoppes, one near Tao at The Venetian; two at the Fashion Show mall, including a large outdoor machine that can stock up to 200 pairs of shoes; and one near the Body English nightclub at the Hard Rock Hotel.

The smaller vending machines stock 70 pairs of flats. Ross services her machines once a week after buying inventory from her British supplier.

The shoes come in a variety of sizes and colors in the retail outlets, with a more limited selection from the vending machines.

The vended shoes come in small plastic cylinders and with polyurethane soles are rolled up in the tube. Each pair comes with a pouch to carry the heels they replace.

The vending machines have simple transaction instructions and a customer can choose black or one other color, whatever is stocked in the machine at the time. Shoes come in four sizes, small (sizes 5-6) medium (7-8), large (9-10) and extra large (11-12).

Vending machines will take transactions by cash or credit card. Most of those are a basic style that sells for $20, but other more elaborate styles sell for $40 in stores.

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REAL ESTATE

Country Club Prep Opens first brick-and-mortar store with further expansion planned

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Atlanta — Country Club Prep, an e-commerce retailer for preppy apparel, is hosting the grand opening of its first brick-and-mortar store in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 23. Launched from a basement in 2012 by two former attorneys Matt Watson and Stephen Glasgow, the concept will launch its brick-and-mortar presence at the University of Virginia.

“In the past few years we have seen how prepsters like us prefer to shop, and we recognized an opportunity to extend our brand offline to enhance the shopping experience for our customers,” said Glasgow.

On the heels of the Charlottesville grand opening, the founders are already planning their second location near the University of Kentucky, with an anticipated opening this fall.

“[Customers] want a brand who gets them – who understands their tastes and sense of style, and who is a natural part of their culture,” said Watson. “That’s the void we’re looking to fill by opening in college and resort towns.”

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Lane Bryant collaborates with designer Lela Rose

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York — Lane Bryant announced that American ready-to-wear designer Lela Rose will be creating a limited-edition line exclusively for the special-sized retailer. The collection is set to hit stores summer 2015, and will be sold under the Lela Rose Exclusively for Lane Bryant label.

Lela Rose will be the third designer collaboration for Lane Bryant, joining the Sophie Theallet and Isabel Toledo collections.

"Lela Rose is a master of the dress – day, night, work and everything between. I am excited for her to bring her signature prints and styles to the Lane Bryant customer," said Linda Heasley, CEO of Lane Bryant.

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