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  • INDUSTRY NEWS

    • On October 16, 2019, it was reported, Gabriella White, parent company to luxury indoor and outdoor furniture brands, Summer Classics, Gabby, and Wendy Jane, will acquire North Carolina-based upholstery manufacturer Stanford Furniture. Family-owned since 1992, Stanford Furniture tailors custom upholstery for the interior design trade and fine furniture retailers. This acquisition enables investment and resources to support the continued growth of Stanford Furniture, as well as a real estate expansion opportunity for Gabriella White, including a High Point Showroom for Summer Classics, Gabby, and Wendy Jane. Gabriella White had launched indoor luxury furniture brand Gabby in 2010, and added Wendy Jane, a collection of handcrafted indoor and outdoor pillows in 2018. The acquisition of Stanford Furniture is an opportunity for all three brands to expand their retail footprint, as well as secure U.S. upholstery capabilities. The acquisition announcement also reflects Gabriella White's continued focus on becoming an industry leader and national brand.
    • On October 14, 2019, it was reported, Ross Stores recently completed its plans to add nearly 100 stores to its footprint this year. The off-price retailer opened 42 stores in the past two months, bringing the total for 2019 to 98, according to a company press release. Of the most recent openings, 30 were Ross Dress for Less stores and 12 were dd's Discounts. Nine of the new locations were in Midwestern states that represent a newer market for the retailer: Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Nebraska and Ohio. Jim Fassio, Ross president and chief development officer, said in a statement that "we remain confident in our ability to grow to 2,400 Ross Dress for Less and 600 dd's DISCOUNTS locations over time." The most recent openings bring the company's total footprint to 1,811 stores.
    • On October 10, 2019, it was reported, Bed Bath & Beyond's new president and CEO is a merchant who has spent more than three decades in retailing. Mark Tritton will join the company and its board of directors effective November 4. He succeeds interim CEO Mary Winston. Most recently, he served as EVP and chief merchandising officer at Target Corporation, where he was involved in transforming the omni-channel shopping experience. His retail industry experience encompasses merchandising, design, manufacturing, marketing and distribution. In addition to Target, he has held positions at Nordstrom, Timberland and Nike.
    • On October 09, 2019, it was reported, Walmart is reportedly laying off staffers from its Bonobos omnichannel menswear brand. According to Vox, Walmart laid off "dozens" of Bonobos' approximately 600 employees on Monday, Oct. 7. It is not clear whether affected roles were in Bonobos' corporate offices, 60-plus brick-and-mortar stores, or both. "Today we made the difficult decision to part ways with valued members of the Bonobos team," a Walmart spokesperson told Vox in a statement. "These decisions are not taken lightly, but we believe they are necessary to set the brand and business up for long-term success." Walmart purchased Bonobos for $310 million in 2017, as part of a larger push at the time to acquire e-commerce brands that appealed to younger, higher-income consumers. Other e-commerce brands purchased around the same time period included ModCloth and Jet.com. However, according to Recode, none of those three retailers has yet turned a profit, and Walmart has been taking action to stem any losses associated with its e-commerce acquisitions. Earlier this month, Walmart reached an agreement to sell ModCloth to GoGlobal Retail for an undisclosed sum. In June 2019, the company announced it would merge Jet.com's retail, technology, marketing, analytics and products teams into the rest of its digital business, eliminating the role of Jet.com president in the process.