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Li Ning, Beijing

BY CSA STAFF

Li Ning, one of China’s largest marketers of sports apparel, footwear and equipment, has opened a flagship in Beijing with a bold design that uses the theme of motion to attract and engage shoppers. A strong angular grid pattern is present throughout the store — in the ceilings, lighting and floor pattern — that creates an impression of non-stop movement. The theme is most visible on the sweeping lines of the four-story façade, which features a massive banner with changeable imagery.

For all its modern imagery and feel, the store is also in sync with Chinese culture, evident in the color palette of reds and golds and the materials used throughout the space. The staircase, for example, features wavy bamboo slats and a red line that winds from bottom to top, and the ceiling is called out with curved aluminum lines.

The parquet wood flooring evokes a traditional gymnasium feeling while also playing to the angular theme. Concrete inlays with white graphics reference sporting fields, basketball courts and running tracks, reflecting the diversity of the merchandise. The display tables are inspired by traditional gym equipment.

Li Ning was designed by Storeage, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


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Polls

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News

The hard part begins for Target in Canada

BY CSA STAFF

Deciding back in January 2011 to spend roughly $1.8 billion to acquire 220 Zellers’ leases was easy compared to the challenge Target has undertaken more recently in Canada.

The company announced it has begun hiring for the first wave of 24 stores to open in Ontario and the stakes couldn’t be higher. Target needs to hires thousands of workers who will be at the front line of customer interaction in this first batch of stores. That means human resources types and operators need to be highly vigilant in their selection and training processes for two key reasons. Target won’t have a second chance to make a first impression with workers and its treatment of them so the on boarding process is crucial, but the same holds true with shoppers. Canadians know who Target is and many have encountered the store experience due to cross-border shopping, but the company will be looking to onboard millions of them in Ontario initially and other markets shortly thereafter. As this process unfolds, all of Canada will be watching, eager to see what all the fuss is about. For better or worse, social media will play a big role with employees and customers sharing their views of working for and shopping at Target.

On factor in Target’s favor on the hiring front is the fact that the unemployment rate in Ontario is comparable to that of the U.S. at around 8%. That’s not so good from a consumer spending standpoint but it does mean Target can be more selective in the hiring process as more people are looking for jobs. Target also stands to attract a large pool of applicants because it is the newest game in town. Even so, Target isn’t taking any chances which is why the hiring process has begun now. The first stores won’t open until March and each will employ between 150 to 200 people.

"Target is looking for talented team members with a wide variety of skills, abilities and backgrounds to help us bring the Target brand experience to life in our new Canadian stores," Bryan Berg, Target Canada’s SVP of stores said in a recent press release that doubled as a help wanted ad. "Whether candidates are looking for a career in retail or a flexible part-time opportunity, Target encourages all those interested to apply to join our store teams."

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OPERATIONS

Kmart, Sears offer ship-to-home for online layaway purchases

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Hoffman Estates, Ill. — Sears Holdings Corp. said Wednesday that its namesake and Kmart stores will offer ship-to-home delivery for items purchased through online layaway.

The new service, which comes at a time when many major retailers are amping up shopper-centric programs for the holiday selling season, is also available on store kiosks, said Sears, enabling customers to bypass the layaway line and select, purchase and have items delivered directly to their homes.

Both retailers will launch the service on Nov. 7.

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