Indian opportunity appears to be opening up
It looks likes India’s rules against foreign direct investment in the retail sector will no longer be an impediment to Walmart’s expansion in the world’s second most populous country.
At least that is the impression given by media reports out of India on Friday where the nation’s parliament was said to approve a plan that would allow foreign companies to own majority positions in retail operations. To make sense of what is, or isn’t, going on in India and how it will impact Walmart’s ability to more vigorously pursue growth in the retail market, click on articles from the following media outlets; AP, Bloomberg and Reuters.
H&M pushes sustainability agenda & customers into stores
STOCKHOLM — H&M will become the first fashion company to roll out garment collecting in select stores worldwide as part of their sustainability initiative.
Beginning February 2013, customers will be able to exchange used garments for shopping discounts in H&M stores in all 48 markets worldwide. Clothing brought to H&M stores will be brought to a recycling facility, where the collected garments will be sorted for re-wearing, reuse and recycling. H&M will accept any pieces of clothing, from any brand and in any condition. In exchange, customers will receive a voucher for 15% off an item of their choice for every one bag of clothing they donate.
The Swedish retailer will generate customer traffic into its stores, while helping achieve their sustainability goals, including helping to save natural resources and contributing to reduced environmental impact by avoiding textile waste.
“Our sustainability efforts are rooted in a dedication to social and environmental responsibility. We want to do good for the environment, which is why we are now offering our customers a convenient solution: to be able to leave their worn-out or defective garments with H&M,” says Karl-Johan Persson, CEO H&M.
Every year, tons of textiles are thrown out with domestic waste and end up in landfills. More than 95% of these clothes could be used again, depending on its condition. Through its Conscious Foundation, H&M has made it its mission to reduce the environmental impact of garments throughout the lifecycle by closing the loop on textile fiber and supporting social projects along H&M’s value chain. The aim is to find long-term technical solutions to reuse and recycle textile fibers on a larger scale.
Online retailer Gilt names new CEO
Discount luxury goods retailer Gilt appointed board member Michelle Peluso CEO effective at the end of February 2013 to replace company founder Kevin Ryan.
Peluso is currently the global consumer chief marketing and Internet officer at Citigroup and has served on the Gilt board since 2009. She fills the position held by Kevin Ryan who founded the innovative company in 2007 and will remain as chairman. Current chairman Susan Lyne will become vice chairman.
"I’m tremendously excited to be leading a company with a brand I love and a team I’ve come to greatly admire," said Peluso. "Gilt has done a terrific job establishing itself as one of the most innovative online shopping destinations and I am looking forward to continuing to build on Gilt’s growth and success."
What makes Gilt unique is that every day at noon the company launches new, limited-time sales of the highly sought after products and most desirable brands in fashion, home decor and leisure. The company has become a leader in the limited duration flash-sale space and has attracted millions of loyal shoppers by offering special access to desirable merchandise and experiences at insider prices.
"Michelle’s deep Internet experience, coupled with her operating and marketing background, made her my ideal choice to be Gilt’s CEO going forward," Ryan said. "We have worked together for three years as fellow board members and I am thrilled she will be leading Gilt to its next level of growth and market leadership."
Before joining Citigroup in 2009, Peluso was CEO of Travelocity from 2003 to 2009 after serving as the company’s COO and SVP of product strategy and distribution. Peluso joined Travelocity following the company’s acquisition of Site59, a travel site she created and launched in 2000. Site59 was the leader in the U.S. "last minute deals" arena and was acquired by Travelocity in March 2002. Prior to leading Site59, Peluso served as a White House Fellow and Senior Advisor to Labor Secretary Alexis Herman and worked as a case leader for The Boston Consulting Group in New York and London.