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Liz Claiborne Inc. and Li & Fung USA reach sale agreement

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK Liz Claiborne Inc. and Li & Fung USA, a member of Li & Fung Limited, today announced that they have reached an agreement for the sale of the assets of four of Liz Claiborne Inc.’s brands: Emma James, Intuitions, JH Collectibles and Tapemeasure.

The transaction, expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2007, includes the sale of trademarks and inventory. Liz Claiborne Inc. has agreed to provide transition services to Li & Fung USA to ensure a smooth transition for retail partners, vendors and employees.

The company also announced that it will incorporate Stamp 10 and Tint product into the Axcess and Liz & Co. lines, respectively, to help boost business at Kohl’s and JCPenney. It has also decided to discontinue its First Issue business at Sears by the end of 2007.

“While this is only the first phase of the strategic review process, we are pleased with the outcome. Li & Fung is a terrific company that will nurture these businesses, seek to provide jobs for many of hte associates working on these brands and enable the transition from Liz Claiborne with minimal disruption to the business,” stated William L. McComb, ceo of Liz Claiborne Inc.

“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Liz Claiborne and will use these well established brands to expand our proprietary brand portfolio,” said Li & Fung USA president Rick Darling. “Everyone involved at Liz Claiborne has shown genuine concern for the various stakeholders affected by this phase of their strategic review, including the retailers, the employees that have worked hard to develop the brands and the integrity of the brands themselves. It has been a very professional and cooperative effort and we now look forward to reinvigorating and growing the brands at retail.”

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Office Depot offers mobile store locator service

BY CSA STAFF

ANAHEIM, Calif. Office Depot has engaged the services of Where2GetIt, a provider of Web- and mobile-based locator technology, to help customers find nearby Office Depot stores.

Web-enabled mobile device users can log onto www.officedepot.com and enter their zip code or city and state to find nearby Office Depot locations. Users can also click the phone number in the “location results” area to be directly connected to the nearest Office Depot from their mobile phone.

 

“With the Where2GetIt mobile technology, customers can conveniently use mobile devices to find Office Depot locations in a matter of minutes — even when they are away from the home or office,” said Noah Maffitt, director of e-commerce for Office Depot.

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Gen Y shoppers split on ‘green’ importance

BY CSA STAFF

ST. LOUIS “Environmentally-friendly” and “eco-conscious” have been common buzzwords among retailers lately, but what do young consumers think about the hype surrounding “green” products? According to recent Maritz survey, the answer is yes, though not as much as one might think.

The survey found that 50% of Gen Y consumers said that a retailer’s environmental policy and sustainability did not influence their shopping behavior. When asked to describe their attitude toward a retailer’s environmentally-friendly positioning, 46% said they’d shop at a retailer more if they were environmentally friendly, while 54% said it wouldn’t affect their behavior.

 

“Being environmentally friendly is certainly the right thing to do and we didn’t set out to debate that,” said Gloria Park Bartolone, division vice president of Maritz Research’s Retail Group. “But we thought it would be helpful for retailers, with all the marketing hype surrounding environmental issues, to know what influence this type of messaging had on customer loyalty, particularly Gen Y.”

 

When it comes to purchasing products, 47% of respondents said they would be willing to pay more for environmentally-friendly services, products or brands. Out of this percentage, the vast majority (77%) cited their “care about the environment” as the reason behind their willingness to pay more, with other qualifiers, such as “it’s the right thing to do” (21%) or “so that people know I’m environmentally aware” (2%) trailing behind.

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