Trending Store: Beauty Story, New York City
There's a new story at Story — the innovative retail outpost in downtown Manhattan that totally reinvents itself every couple of months — and this time it's all about beauty.
Story has partnered with global beauty giant Coty to transform the space into a beauty lover's paradise. Beauty Story showcases Coty's Covergirl, Clairol, Sally Hansen and Rimmel brands along with an array of cutting-edge and lesser known ones. (According to a report by WWD, a typical sponsorship at Story costs $500,000 and holiday concepts cost $1 million.)
Shoppers at Beauty Story can virtually try on and share the latest makeup looks from Coty looks via an app (Perfect Corp.'s YouCam AR Makeup Mirror). The space includes a prestige beauty section conceptualized by Space NK founder Nicky Kinnaird, an outpost of cult Manhattan salon Hayday offering 30-minute custom facials, complimentary skin consultations and related products, and a Sally Hansen DIY nail bar where customers can try out new looks.
Bold wall displays (by Instagram artist Adam Hillman) form a colorful backdrop for the featured merchandise. There are several displays or activations that encourage interaction, and even rewarding it with complimentary products. A Vengo Labs digital vending machine, for instance, dispenses a complimentary Rimmel product for guests who pose for a photo against the in-store backdrop.
Beauty Story will be open through October 8. During that time, it will host various events, including makeup tutorials and touchups, and a Business of Beauty session featuring Kinnaird, who will discuss trends, insights and lessons about the current state of the beauty industry.
Founded by Rachel Shechtman, Story takes the editorial viewpoint of a magazine, and changes its merchandise and theme similar to a gallery.
Gymboree to exit bankruptcy
Children’s apparel retailer Gymboree Corp. will exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy as a going concern — and with a reduced footprint.
The children's apparel retailer won court approval to exit bankruptcy with a reorganization plan that includes a comprehensive recapitalization that will eliminate about $1 billion in debt. It expects to complete its financial restructuring process and emerge from Chapter 11 by the end of the month.
Gymboree filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June 2017. According to court filings, the company plans to close 330 underperforming stores. Post-bankruptcy, it will have a $225 million credit facility, a $48.5 million exit asset-backed term loan replacement facility and a $35 million exit term loan facility.
"We are very pleased with the Court's approval of our plan, which marks a major milestone in Gymboree's restructuring process and facilitates a path forward to our emergence as a stronger and more competitive organization," said Daniel Griesemer, president and CEO of Gymboree. "While there is still work ahead to complete the process, we are excited about the future opportunities for Gymboree as we continue to transform the business."
As of April 29, 2017, the Company operated a total of 1,281 retail stores: 582 Gymboree stores (532 in the United States, 49 in Canada and one in Puerto Rico), 172 Gymboree Outlet stores (171 in the United States and one in Puerto Rico), 149 Janie and Jack shops (148 in the United States and one in Puerto Rico) and 378 Crazy 8 stores in the United States.
Kroger Q2 profit falls on price cuts as same-store sales rise
Aggressive price cuts took a toll on the nation's largest grocery store operator in its second quarter.
Kroger Co.'s net income fell to $353 million, or 39 cents per share, in the quarter ended Aug. 12, from $383 million, or 40 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Its results were in line with the Street estimates. Gross margins fell by 30 basis points.
Kroger has been cutting prices in the wake of increased competition from online competitors, Walmart and such deep-discount players as Aldi. Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, called such cuts a "necessary evil" if Kroger is to maintain its competitiveness and dominance in the sector. The good news, he added, is that the strategy appears to be paying off in terms of sales.
Kroger's revenue rose 3.9% to $27.6 billion from $26.6 billion last year, topping analysts' estimate of $27.5 billion. Same-store sales edged up 0.7% after two consecutive quarters of declines, better than the expected 0.4% growth.
"We returned to positive identical supermarket sales growth in the second quarter," said chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen. "We had strong growth in both loyal and total households. Traffic is up, unit movement is up, market share is up, and our customers' price perception is excellent and continues to improve."
Kroger confirmed its 2017 net earnings guidance for 53 weeks of $1.74-$1.79 per diluted share. It expects same-store sales to rise 0.5% to 1% excluding fuel. But the company said its expectations do not include any impact from hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
"As our business continues to improve, we remain committed to delivering on our guidance in 2017 and believe we have the ability to grow identical supermarket sales and market share in 2018," McMullen said.