UGG Australia launching online customization tool
New York — UGG Australia will launch UGG by You, an online customization tool putting customers in control of the design process and transforming a visit to the retailer’s website from a shopping trip to a creative experience.
The customization tool allows consumers to mix and match an array of color schemes on two classic styles, the UGG Classic Short sheepskin boot and its Fluff Flip Flop, through a user-friendly design tool. There are over 11,000 color, outsole and trim combinations possible through the footwear personalization tool.
"UGG lovers have a unique, emotional connection with our brand, and with each pair they buy," said UGG Australia president Constance X. Rishwain.
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Neiman Marcus to invest $100 million in omnichannel project
New York — Luxury department store retailer Neiman Marcus Group plans to invest in a $100 million project designed to drive sales across all its retail channels: physical stores, mobile and online, the Dallas Business Journal reported.
The report, which cited a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, described the project as a multi-year initiative to develop a merchandising platform across all brands and channels.
The development of the platform is expected to begin during fiscal 2014. It is targeted for implementation in fiscal 2016.
ICSC: September sales post 4.0% increase; drug stores strongest performing segment
New York — U.S. chain-store sales posted a gain of 4.0% for the fiscal month of September on a year-over-year basis according to a tally compiled by the International Council of Shopping Centers. Excluding gasoline sales, the September tally would actually be +5.1%.
“The biggest story line here is that the September performance was led by the drug-store segment, posting its strongest monthly showing since April 2007,” said Michael P. Niemira, VP of research and chief economist for ICSC. “This seemingly heralds the full recovery of this segment after an extended period of weakness due to several mitigating factors.”
Drug-store sales rose by 6.0% in September. Apparel was the weakest performing segment, posting a 0.1% gain (preliminary number does not include Gap Inc.).
For October, ICSC research anticipates that comparable-store sales will increase between 3% and 4.0%. However, the backdrop of the federal government shutdown does have the potential to curb spending during the month, biasing the October expectations to a slightly weaker performance even on the heels of a strong gain in September.
The ICSC Chain Store Sales Trends is a monthly report on the U.S. retail industry’s sales performance based on an ICSC preliminary compilation of publicly-available sales for 11 chain stores during the month of September. Industry sales aggregates are compiled for "comparable-store" or "same-store" sales and for total store sales. Those data are presented as an index.
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