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Target, Neiman Marcus design a new kind of partnership

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS and DALLAS — Target and Neiman Marcus have joined forces for a unique partnership that will bring a limited-edition holiday collection to both stores beginning Dec. 1. The collection will also be available online at Target.com and NeimanMarcus.com.

“Target and Neiman Marcus are known for charting new terrain, and by joining forces for the holiday season, we’ve set the stage for a redefining moment in retail,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Target. “This collaboration is unlike anything Target has done before, and we are confident our guests will be thrilled with this extraordinary collection that features some of America’s most preeminent designers.”

The Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday Collection includes an eclectic and diverse mix of more than 50 limited-edition gifting products. The collection ranges from $7.99 to $499.99, with most items less than $60. Designers who created pieces for the collection include Alice + Olivia, Altuzarra, Carolina Herrera, Derek Lam, Diane von Furstenberg, Jason Wu, Judith Leiber, Lela Rose, Marchesa, Oscar de la Renta, Proenza Schouler, Rag & Bone,Tory Burch and Tracy Reese.

“Neiman Marcus and Target share a passion for great design and delighting customers in new and unexpected ways,” said Karen Katz, president and chief executive officer, The Neiman Marcus Group. “We are thrilled to be collaborating to offer a spectacular and special collection of one-of-a-kind items for the holidays. These will be the ‘must-have’ gifts, whether you are a loyal Neiman Marcus customer, a devoted Target guest or a fan of American design.”

To celebrate the unprecedented partnership, Target and Neiman Marcus are donating a total of $1 million to the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). The donation underscores the retailers’ long-standing commitment to fostering design talent and recognizes the 24 designers, all of whom are members of the CFDA.

“I can think of no better finale to CFDA’s 50th Anniversary celebration than through this extraordinary designer collaboration,” said CFDA President Diane von Furstenberg. “As designers, creativity is our best gift, and with the generous support of Neiman Marcus and Target, we are happy to have created specially designed products as a thank you to share with our consumers and friends.”

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Wolverine Worldwide on track with key acquisition from Collective Brands

BY CSA STAFF

ROCKFORD, Mich. — Wolverine Worldwide reported slight revenue growth as it looks to build its portfolio with the acquisition of the Performance and Lifestyle Group from Collective Brands.

Wolverine Worldwide reported quarterly revenue of $312.7 million, an increase of 0.8% compared with the prior year’s second quarter when revenue grew over 20%.

Reported diluted earnings per share in the quarter were 42 cents, compared with prior year’s earnings per share of 48 cents.

"We are pleased that despite the softness in certain global markets, most notably Europe, we remain on track to deliver another year of record financial results," said Blake Krueger, chairman and CEO. "Our diverse brand portfolio and a business model that spans geographies and distribution channels help to mitigate risk and smooth out a choppy global retail environment. Our U.S. business had a solid quarter, and the company’s consumer direct business was also a bright spot, posting a strong double-digit revenue increase from both brick and mortar locations and the e-commerce channel. Our outdoor group, consisting of Merrell, Chaco and Patagonia Footwear, delivered a solid revenue increase in the quarter."

Based on expectations of strong at-once orders in the second half of the fiscal year, primarily the fourth quarter, the company is reaffirming its full-year revenue guidance in a range of $1.46 billion to $1.50 billion, representing full-year growth of 3.6% to 6.4% compared to the prior year. The company is also maintaining its full-year earnings per share guidance in a range of $2.70 to $2.80, representing growth of 8.9% to 12.9%.

The company’s guidance reflects its expectations prior to any costs or benefits relating to the pending Performance and Lifestyle Group acquisition from Collective Brands and, as such, does not include the $4.9 million of non-recurring expenses recorded in the second quarter. On a reported basis, the company expects full-year earnings per share to range from $2.64 to $2.74 (6.5% to 10.5% growth over the prior year), which includes the year-to-date impact of the PLG acquisition-related expenses.

Krueger concluded, "Recent feedback from key retailers reinforces our positive outlook for the remainder of 2012, and we fully expect to deliver another year of record financial performance. We are tremendously excited about adding the Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, Stride Rite and Keds brands and team members to our already powerful portfolio of global lifestyle brands. We remain on track to close the transaction in late summer to early fall."

Wolverine World Wide’s portfolio of brands includes: Bates, Chaco, Cushe, Hush Puppies, HYTEST, Merrell, Sebago, Soft Style and Wolverine. The Company also is the footwear licensee of popular brands including CAT, Harley-Davidson and Patagonia.

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TWE names acting CFO

BY CSA STAFF

ALBANY, N.Y. — Trans World Entertainment has named John Anderson acting CFO, effective immediately. Anderson has served in positions of increasing responsibility at Trans World for over 18 years, most recently serving as controller since September 2006. Anderson will be replacing Tom Seaver who will be leaving the company to pursue other opportunities after a short transition period.

Mike Honeyman, president and COO, said: "We are very pleased to announce John as our acting CFO. John has been a valued member of our leadership team and has a strong track record of delivering results. He’s ideally suited to oversee the company’s financial operations and support our efforts to grow and deliver value for our shareholders. Also, we thank Tom Seaver for his service and wish him well in the future."

As acting CFO, Anderson will lead Trans World Entertainment’s financial planning and financial reporting divisions.

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