REAL ESTATE

Lush Joins Cherry Hill Mall’s roster of market debuts

BY CSA STAFF

Cherry Hill, N.J. — Philadelphia-based Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PREIT) announced that cosmetics retailer Lush will open a new store at Cherry Hill Mall, in Cherry Hill, N.J.

The new 860-sq.-ft. store is located in the Macy’s wing of the mall.

Cherry Hill Mall has also welcomed 77kids by American Eagle, Bare Escentuals, Buckle, The Disney Store, Francesca’s Collections, Guess, Guess by Marciano, and White House Black Market in 2010 and Red Mango in 2011, reinforcing the center’s position as the top South Jersey fashion and dining destination.

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Family Dollar escalates private brand efforts

BY CSA STAFF

The nation’s second largest dollar store chain may have rejected a buyout offer this week, but it struck a deal of another kind to help it grow sales of private brands.

Family Dollar said it had reached a strategic alignment agreement with Marketing Management Inc. help it with a range of private label issues including sourcing, product development, category analytics, assortment strategy, quality assurance and customer insights. Fort Worth-based MMI will maintain an on-site presence at Family Dollar’s headquarters in Matthews, N.C. The strategic alignment with MMI was formally announced at a private brand summit Family Dollar held at it offices that was attended by 100 suppliers.

“Enhancing our private brand assortment to drive margin improvement and customer loyalty is a key strategic initiative for Family Dollar,” said Don Hamblen, Family Dollar’s SVP customer marketing. “A compelling assortment of private brand merchandise gives our value-conscious customer more choices at lower prices without lower standards. Our alignment with MMI will help ensure our assortment is focused on quality and value across all our consumables departments.”

MMI is a sales and marketing company focused on private brands that maintains relationships with more than 600 product manufacturers in the food, household and health and beauty categories. Family Dollar said it is looking to grow its high quality, value-priced, private brand alternatives for shoppers and indicated that MMI and its partners are able to promote increased sales through innovative marketing programs that raise awareness and improve consumer perception of the retailer’s brands.

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Unemployment rate dips to 8.9%

BY CSA STAFF

The unemployment rate dipped from 9.0% in January to 8.9% in February, according to data released Friday morning by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Construction employment grew by 33,000 in February, following a decline of 22,000 in January that may have reflected severe winter weather, according to the bureau. Within construction, specialty trade contractors accounted for the bulk of the February job gain (+28,000).

Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 192,000 in February. The number of unemployed persons held steady at about 13.7 million. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was 6.0 million and accounted for 43.9% of the unemployed.

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