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Report: Brands Bring Electronics Consumers into Warehouse Clubs

BY CSA STAFF

Port Washington, N.Y., Increasing numbers of consumers are exploring warehouse clubs and discount stores as viable options for making consumer electronic (CE) purchases, but not for all CE purchases, according to new report “Clubs and Mass: Tech Consumers Change Channels” from The NPD Group.

While there is willingness to shop at discount and warehouse clubs, actual purchasing still remains low. Among the 34% of consumers who said they shopped at a discount store over the past 12 months, only 23% actually bought something. Of the 14% who shopped at a warehouse club, only 10% made a purchase.

Most consumers are purchasing lower-end products at warehouse clubs and discount stores. According to the report, the highest instances of CE purchases at discount stores were for items selling for less than $200 and digital cameras selling for less than $400. Higher-end products, such as TVs and computers were under 10%. All CE purchases at warehouse clubs, higher and lower-end, were under 10%.

However, this is not a result of not trusting the brands being sold at clubs and discount stores. According to the report, 58% of consumers surveyed agreed that warehouse clubs offered trusted brands at a good price, the number rose to 65% for discount stores.

Only a quarter of the consumers surveyed expressed concerns that the brand name products being sold through these channels were inferior models or of lesser quality.

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Sept. sales up 9.7% for Wal-Mart, raises outlook

BY CSA STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark. Wal-Mart Stores today reported net sales of $34.4 billion for September period ended Oct. 5, an increase of 9.7% over sales of $31.4 for the same period last year.

The company reported that comparable-store sales for September increased 1.4%, excluding fuel.

The company it expects the comparable-store sales of its U.S. operations for the October four-week reporting period to be between flat and 2 %, said Tom Schoewe, evp and cfo.

 

“We estimate that earnings per share from continuing operations for the third quarter of fiscal year 2008 will change from within our previously stated guidance of 62 cents to 65 cents to a range of 66 cents to 69 cents,” Schoewe said. “For the first two months of the quarter, we have seen improvement in initial margin and expense leverage at the Wal-Mart Stores division, which is driving this change.”

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Banana Republic exec to head Kate Spade

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK Liz Claiborne today announced that Deborah Lloyd, former evp of design and product development for Banana Republic, will join the company as co-president and creative director of Kate Spade, effective Nov. 1.

Lloyd will oversee all creative aspects of the Kate Spade and Jack Spade Brands, including, product design, merchandising, creative services and public relations. She will report directly to William McComb, ceo of Liz Claiborne.

Lloyd joins Kate Spade after a six year tenure at Banana Republic where she had responsibility for driving design for all products, for both the women’s and men’s businesses, including accessories and fragrance. Prior to Banana Republic, she spent five years at Burberry, where she was instrumental in re-launching Burberry’s Women’s London Collection, while working closely with Rose Marie Bravo in reinvigorating that business.

Lloyd said: “This opportunity came at a time when only something as creative and entrepreneurial as this could have pulled me away from my present role. What was so compelling was the instant connection that I had to the brand, and I love what it stands for. I really believe Kate Spade is a jewel, and I am very excited to further develop it as a lifestyle brand.”

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