Sears lives to die another day

Against the odds—and over the objections of most creditors—Eddie Lampert has "saved" Sears, with a federal bankruptcy court judge approving the sale of the once-storied retailer to the billionaire hedge fund king. At one level, we should admire the resilience of the former Sears CEO (and its principal shareholder, though ESL Holdings). Part Energizer bunny, part Michael Myers from the … Continue reading Sears lives to die another day

My 13 ‘provocative’ retail predictions for 2018: So how’d I do?

'Tis the season for annual retail predictions and, fear not dear reader, I will be sharing mine early in the New Year. Yet amidst all the prognostication nary a modern day Nostradamus gets fact checked on how well-honed their gift of prophecy actually turns out to be. I don't want to be that guy. So here's … Continue reading My 13 ‘provocative’ retail predictions for 2018: So how’d I do?

Eddie Lampert just can’t stop picking at Sears’ carcass

As some readers may know, I began my retail career at Sears. And these days, when folks ask how long I worked there, I typically say, "Too long." The more accurate, less snarky answer is 12 years. I learned a tremendous amount during my tenure and, for the most part, am proud of the work … Continue reading Eddie Lampert just can’t stop picking at Sears’ carcass

JC Penney goes back to the future, but it’s likely too little, too late

At one level, the announcement that JC Penney was going to stop wooing younger customers in favor of focusing on baby boomer moms seems to make a lot of sense. During the devastating Ron Johnson era, Penney's was practically driven out of business by trying to execute what I call the customer trapeze way too quickly while simultaneously … Continue reading JC Penney goes back to the future, but it’s likely too little, too late

Better is not the same as good for department stores stuck in the middle

As most U.S. department stores reported earnings recently, a certain level of ebullience took hold. Macy's, Kohl's and even Dillard's, for crying out loud, beat Wall Street expectations, sending their respective shares higher. J.C. Penney, which has failed to gain any real traction despite Sears' flagging fortunes, continued to disappoint, suggesting that I probably need to revisit my somewhat hopeful … Continue reading Better is not the same as good for department stores stuck in the middle