First Look: bebe, New York City
Nearly a year after it closed down its retail operation and shuttered its stores, bebe has re-emerged with a new “lifestyle” concept store.
Located near the Empire State Building in Midtown Manhattan, the store has a modern, elegant look, with a glittering bebe sign made of 38,000 Swarovski crystals.
Other store features include:
• A beauty bar (in partnership with on-demand beauty service beGlammed) where shoppers can have their hair and make-up done on site;
• A personalization bar offering customization on merchandise using Swarovski crystals, patches and embroidery;
• A lounge where Bebe will host interactive discussions and engaging educational events with top influencers and fashion industry insiders.
• In-store iPads for ordering from bebe’s website.
“We are excited about the grand opening of the bebe store and introducing consumers to a new lifestyle concept,” stated Ralph Gindi, COO of Bluestar Alliance, which forged a partnership with bebe stores in 2016 to create new licensees and product extensions for the brand. “bebe is about leading trends in the industry and we have incorporated this concept into the new store by offering the latest fashions, in-store embroidering and beauty services where consumers can leave the store looking fabulous. It’s a fresh perspective to engage our loyal and new consumers of the brand.”
Bebe closed all its retail stores last spring but did not file for bankruptcy. It transferred its intellectual property rights, including licensing revenue and its website, to BB Brand Holdings LLC, an operating subsidiary that is 50% owned by Bluestar Alliance, a brand management company. In June, Global Brands Group Holding Limited announced it was partnering with bebe to relaunch an e-commerce platform and its international brick-and-mortar stores.
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Eataly drops anchor in Los Angeles
Upscale Italian marketplace Eataly has opened its largest location to date and first on the West Coast.
Eataly L.A., resigned by Studios Architecture and built by Clune Construction Company, is located at the newly renovated Westfield Century City mall in Los Angeles. The three-story, 67,000-sq.-ft. space includes four restaurants, multiple kitchens, nine take-away food counters, a cooking school, extensive retail, and two chilled wine storage rooms. Two interconnected spiral staircases link all three floors.
The project included the construction of a clean room designated for the on-site preparation of gelato and mozzarella. Customized pasteurizers were installed to replicate the authentic taste of gelato and mozzarella from Italy.
Eataly L.A. was designed by Studios Architecture and built by Clune Construction Company. It is the fifth Eataly in the United States, and 39th globally.
Caution on LED rebates
The Design Lights Consortium implemented a new version of its LED specifications (DLC 4.2) last year. For most LED products, it required improved efficacy (increased lumens per watt). Products that did not meet the specification were removed from the DLC list (as of April 1, 2017).
DLC is very important when rebates come into play, according to BriteSwitch, which help businesses take advantage of rebates and incentive programs, as 70% to 85% of the rebate programs in the U.S. (depending on the product category) require LED products to be DLC approved to qualify for rebates. There is a new level of complexity as each program has different policies regarding the transition to DLC 4.2, advised the company. Numerous rebate programs have said, however, that only DLC 4.2 approved products can be used to qualify for rebates. In these areas, it is crucial to verify the product being used is on the most current DLC 4.2 list.
“It is very important to know your specific rebate program, what they allow, and the qualifications of the product you are using,” BriteSwitch said in a posting on its website. “You have to do your homework which will usually require reading the fine print and calling the rebate implementer. Also, we have noticed many rebate programs recently revising their policy without any notice due to customer feedback so you must stay up to date.”