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Q4 comps a disaster at JCP

BY CSA STAFF

Fouth quarter same store sales fell by a jaw-dropping 31.7% at J.C. Penney, but CEO Ron Johnson insisted the company continues to make great strides with its one year old transformation strategy.

The company report an adjusted net loss for the quarter of $427 million, or $1.95 a share and a full year adjusted net loss of $766 million or $3.49 a share.

"Sales and customer traffic were below our expectations in 2012, but as we execute our ambitious transformation plan, we are pleased with the great strides we made to improve J.C. Penney’s cost structure, technology platforms and the overall customer experience," Johnson said. "We have accomplished so much in the last twelve months. We believe the bold actions taken in 2012 will materially improve the company`s long-term growth and profitability."

The fourth quarter sales results were the worst for the company all year and represented a sequential decline from the third quarter’s negative 26.1%, a negative 21.7% second quarter comp and a negative 18.9% first quarter comp. Those figure were on top of a 0.2% gain in the fiscal year ended January 28, 2012 and a 2.5% increase in the fiscal year ended January 29, 2011.

Undeterred by the weak sales results, Johnson remains convinced of a strategy that involves remodeling the entire chain to showcase a series of brand and designer shops.

"Looking ahead, we are energized by our shop roll out plans for 2013 and the exciting work our teams are undertaking to transform the store," Johnson said. "Combining a new marketing campaign focused on style and value, incredible new brands and updated merchandise, with continued enhancements to the customer experience both in our stores and on jcp.com, we are working towards reconnecting with our core customer while attracting new customers to J.C. Penney."

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Saks comps up slightly in Q4, focused on omnichannel efforts

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK — Saks reported that sales for the fourth quarter were up 5.6% over the same period last year. Same-store sales were up 0.7% for the period.

For the fourth quarter Saks recorded net income of $20.4 million, or 13 cents per diluted share, compared with net income of$37 million, or 21 cents per diluted share for the same period last year.

Stephen Sadove, chairman and CEO of the company, noted, “We posted a 0.7% comparable store sales gain in the fourth quarter, essentially in line with our expectation of relatively flat comparable store sales. This modest gain was on top of a very solid 7.7% comparable store sales increase in the fourth quarter of 2011. As previously disclosed, our fourth quarter sales were negatively impacted by Hurricane Sandy which caused significant disruption to our very important Northeastern markets and to saks.com."

Sadove also commented on the strides the company made during the year.

Sadove noted, “Even though 2012 was a challenging year, it was also a year of meaningful progress and transformation for Saks. We continued to execute our core merchandising, service, and marketing strategies while building critically important omni-channel capabilities to position us for the future. We made headway on several important initiatives:

We began work on Project Evolution, our substantial multi-year transformation of and investment in our information technology systems to facilitate an omni-channel shopping environment for our customers.

We began expanding the omni-channel experience for our customers by adding iPads to our stores, testing ‘buy online, ship from store,’ and adding select ‘store only’ inventory items to our saks.com offerings.

On the marketing front, we began using enhanced consumer analytics and insights to drive marketing effectiveness through targeted and personalized initiatives. In January, we relaunched our SaksFirst loyalty program, expanding the benefits and eliminating the spending threshold to participate in the program.

We made meaningful year-over-year improvements in our in-store customer service scores and continued to receive high marks for our online service.”

For the fiscal year, the company expects compsto grow in the 3% to 5% range.

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Crosman shoots for marketing success with new hire

BY CSA STAFF

ROCHESTER, New York — Crosman Corp., an international designer, manufacturer, and marketer of a wide range of products for the shooting sports, has announced the appointment of Jennifer Lambert as VP marketing. In her new position, Lambert will oversee the company’s strategic marketing efforts, with an emphasis on accelerating new product development.

According to Crosman president and CEO, Phil Dolci, “Jennifer’s leadership style and success in leveraging marketing strategy to achieve superior results distinguishes her, and I’m pleased to welcome her to the Crosman family. With more than 15 years of experience across a wide range of consumer products and services, Jennifer’s vision is a key factor in the creation of a best-in-class marketing organization to reinforce Crosman’s leadership in the marketplace,” Dolci added.

Before joining Crosman Lambert served as global marketing director at Bausch + Lomb Inc., where she was responsible for execution and global strategy for the company’s lens care brands. Preceding that, she was marketing director at Sun Products, a privately held maker of laundry and home care products, where she was instrumental in establishing and growing the Snuggle and Surf brands. Prior to her work at Sun Products, Lambert made significant contributions during her 10 years at PepsiCo, where she held a number of brand marketing and innovation roles.

Says Lambert, “I’m thrilled to be working at an iconic, industry-leading company such as Crosman which has been part of American culture and the Rochester area business community for more than 90 years. We make great products that allow people to enjoy active outdoor lifestyles, and we have unlimited opportunity to continue to surprise and delight them with new and innovative offerings,” commented Lambert.

Lambert holds both a BS and an MS in advertising from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and received her MBA from the University of Connecticut. Lambert, her husband and two children live in Pittsford, NY.

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