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NRF: Consumers to show lots of spending love this Valentine’s Day

BY CSA STAFF

WASHINGTON — Consumers are set to put out all the stops this Valentine’s Day, with the average person shelling out $126.03, up 8.5% over last year, according to NRF’s 2012 Valentine’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, conducted by BIGinsight. Total spending is expected to reach $17.6 billion.

Consumers’ “better halves” will shell out the most on their partners, with the average person planning to spend $74.12 on their spouse or significant other, up from $68.98 last year. Additionally, consumers will spend and average of $25.25 on their children, parents or other family members and $6.92 on friends. And don’t forget pets: The average person will spend about $4.52 on their pets.

The survey also found the average male is expected to spend $168.74 on clothing, jewelry, greeting cards and more this year — nearly twice as much as women who are expected to spend an average of $85.76.

In addition to traditional gift ideas, those celebrating the holiday will also put some serious thought into the perfect gift. More than eight in 10 (18.9%) will buy jewelry, the highest percent in the survey’s history. Total spending on jewelry is expected to reach $4.1 billion, up from $3.5 billion last year.

Additionally, 50.5% all celebrants will buy candy, 36% will buy flowers and 35.6% will treat someone to a nice evening out.

Though discount stores are expected to see the most traffic (37.0%), one-third of shoppers (33.6%) will head to department stores, up from 30.5 percent last year. Nearly 19.3% will shop online for gifts this Valentine’s Day. Others will shop at specialty stores (20.2%), floral shop (17.8%), jewelry stores (10.6%) and specialty clothing stores (6.6%).

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Discounters post solid results for January; Macy’s misses estimates

BY Marianne Wilson

New York City — The nation’s discount chains reported solid results for January, with Target Corp., TJX Cos., and Costco Wholesale Corp. all reporting gains above expectations. Overall, discounters reported stronger results than department stores, which appeared to take a greater hit due to the unseasonably warm weather and heavy promotions.

As the first month of the year, January accounts for only 20% November-January sales, and 7% of annual sales, according to RetailMetrics.

Costco continued its winning ways as its same-store sales climbed 8% in January, helped by strong sales of food, small appliances and men’s apparel, along with higher gas prices. Results topped expectations for a 6.1%.

At Target, same-store sales increased 4.3% in January, better than the 2.1% increase rose analysts had predicted. The chain cited shoes, healthcare products and boys’ and girls’ clothing as among its strongest categories. Weaker categories included electronics and books.

Macy’s had a 2.4% increase, which was below the 3.5% increase that analysts had expected. However, the chain raised its guidance for the fourth quarter — which did not include January — and for the full year.

For the four-weeks ended Jan. 29, Macy’s said its total sales rose 2% to $1.34 billion, from $1.31 billion in the year-ago period. Online sales jumped 38.7% in January.

Total sales for the fiscal fourth quarter rose 5.5% to $8.72 billion. Fourth-quarter online sales jumped 40% and boosted the company’s same-store revenue for the quarter by 1.7 percentage points, Macy’s said.

"The fourth quarter was our strongest in many years, and demonstrated the continued progress in improving the fundamentals in our business at Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s," said Terry J. Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Macy’s.

In other discounter/department store same-store sales results for January:

  • Kohl’s reported a 0.6% rise compared with the year-ago period, just above forecasts for 0.5%. Total sales advanced 2.4% to $844 million.
  • TJX Cos. said its sales rose 7%, easily ahead of forecasts for a 3.3% gain. The company raised its fourth-quarter guidance.
  • Saks’ sales rose a better-then-expected 10.5%, driven by sales of women’s apparel, handbags and men’s accessories.
  • Big Lots Inc. reported a 7.7% increase and raised its fourth-quarter earnings outlook above analysts’ estimates.
  • Nordstrom’s sales rose 5% versus a year earlier. Total sales for the chain climbed 13.2% to $688 million.
  • Fred’s reported that its sales decreased 0.8%.
  • The Bon-Ton Stores Inc. reported a 3.5% decrease, and blamed the poor performance to a mild winter.
  • At Dillard’s, sales were unchanged for January compared with a year ago.

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Sachse takes on new role at Macy’s

BY CSA STAFF

CINCINNATI — Macy’s Inc. announced that Peter Sachse, the company’s chief marketing officer and chairman of Macys.com, will succeed Ron Klein as chief stores officer, effective Feb. 13. Klein will retire from Macy’s effective March 31, after 36 years with the company.

Sachse will be responsible for the nationwide portfolio of Macy’s stores, as well as the region and district stores organization and visual merchandising. He also will retain responsibility for the company’s omnichannel strategy, which brings together stores, online and mobile capabilities to serve customers whenever and wherever they want to shop. He will remain a member of the company’s executive committee and continue to report to Terry Lundgren, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Macy’s Inc.

Jeffrey Gennette, Macy’s chief merchandising officer, will assume additional responsibility for overseeing marketing and Macys.com. He will closely coordinate those functions within the company’s My Macy’s localization and omnichannel strategies. Gennette will remain a member of the company’s executive committee and continue to report to Lundgren.

Jeff Kantor, president merchandising of Macys.com, will become chairman of Macys.com, effective Feb. 13. Kantor and Kent Anderson, President of macys.com, will continue to oversee Macy’s Internet business and play a key role in the omnichannel strategy. Kantor will join the company’s executive committee and report to Gennette.

Martine Reardon, EVP marketing, will succeed Sachse as Macy’s chief marketing officer, effective Feb. 13. In this role, Reardon will be responsible for all marketing, advertising, creative development, social media, cause marketing, brand public relations, tourism marketing, customer insights and data analysis. She will join the company’s executive committee and report to Gennette.

“These changes reflect the strength of our senior-level talent and the teamwork that drives our company’s key growth strategies – My Macy’s localization, omnichannel, and MAGIC Selling customer engagement. Our organization is deep and experienced, which facilitates our ability to crisply execute strategies and to move quickly to capitalize on new opportunities as they arise,” Lundgren said.

“We salute the outstanding contributions that Ron Klein has made to our company for nearly four decades. I respect him as a colleague and value him as a friend. In every position over the years, Ron has led with passion. He keenly understands customers’ needs and how to serve them through stores that are customer-centric and locally focused. Ron and Peter have worked side-by-side for many years, which allows us to move forward without skipping a beat,” he added.

Sachse, 53, added the role of Macy’s chief marketing officer in February 2009, along with serving as chairman and CEO of macys.com since April 2006. He also served as president of Macy’s corporate marketing and was the company’s first chief marketing officer in June 2003. Prior to serving in these roles, Sachse was president and COO of The Bon Marché in Seattle. He began his retail career with Macy’s in Kansas City and was division merchandise manager at Bullock’s in Los Angeles. He was also EVP, general merchandise manager at Macy’s East and was later promoted to vice chair, director of stores of Macy’s East. A native of Sheboygan, Wis., Sachse lives in the New York City area. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin.

Klein, 62, was named Macy’s chief stores officer in February 2009. His previous roles with the company included chairman and CEO of Macy’s East in New York, chairman of Rich’s/Lazarus/Goldsmith’s in Atlanta, vice chairman and director of stores for Macy’s East, and chairman of Stern’s in New Jersey. Klein began his retail career in 1974 as a buyer at Bloomingdale’s, and served in merchandising positions of increasing responsibility in several divisions of Federated Department Stores Inc. before moving to Macy’s East in 1998. In the mid-1980s, he served for two years as a merchant executive at Saks Fifth Avenue. A native New Yorker, Klein lives in the New York City area. He is a graduate of American University, and holds a master’s degree from New York University.

Gennette, 50, was named Macy’s chief merchandising officer in February 2009. Previously, he served as chairman and CEO of Macy’s West since February 2008 after serving as chairman of Macy’s Northwest in Seattle and executive vice president and director of stores for Macy’s Central in Atlanta. Prior to that, Gennette was SVP, general merchandise manager at Macy’s West. Gennette joined Macy’s West in 1983 as an executive trainee and also has served with FAO Schwarz and Broadway stores. A native of San Diego, Gennette lives in the New York City area. He is a graduate of Stanford University.

Kantor, 52, was named Macys.com’s president for merchandising in August 2010. Previously he was Macy’s president merchandising for home since May 2009. From February 2006 to May 2009, Kantor was president for furniture for Macy’s Home Store. For the previous two years, Kantor was president of the Hecht’s/Strawbridge’s division of the May Department Stores Company, which was acquired by Macy’s Inc. in 2005. He also served as SVP and general merchandise manager for cosmetics, accessories, dresses, suits, intimate apparel and hosiery at the Boston-based Filene’s/Kaufmann’s division of May Company. A native of Belmont, Mass., Kantor joined Filene’s in Boston in 1981 as an assistant buyer for men’s. He is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and lives in the New York City area.

Reardon, 49, has served as EVP marketing since February 2009. Previously, Reardon served since 2007 as EVP national marketing strategy, events and public relations for Macy’s corporate marketing. Prior positions included SVP marketing and sales promotion at New York-based Macy’s East. Following the merger of Federated Department Stores and R.H. Macy & Co. in 1994, she was named VP media overseeing the Macy’s/Federated marketing effort. Reardon began her retail career in special events at Federated’s Abraham & Straus division in Brooklyn in 1984. A native of New York City, Reardon lives in the New York City area. She is a graduate of St. Francis College in Brooklyn.

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