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Dick Seesel

Principal
Retailing In Focus LLC

Four consecutive profitable quarters look good for a company that seemed willing not long ago to keep losing money in order to gain share and invest in infrastructure. Those logistics investments are starting to pay off, and the growth in Prime membership reinforces Amazon's brand image as the best...

Sephora is not a store-within-a-store idea along the same lines as the branded shops rolled out during the Ron Johnson era. Instead, it gives J.C. Penney a chance to be category-dominant in a business (cosmetics) that a traditional department store needs to succeed. And (in J.C. Penney's case) the...

I'm sure that loyal J.Crew customers would welcome an email from the CEO, but I think it's going to take more than this to regain their business. It's an open question whether "my J.Crew is back" (in the SoHo customer's words).

As regular shoppers for three family members in their...

This is a title (like "Chief Experience Officer") that only means something when the underlying value is embraced by the entire organization. It's hard to impose "innovation" from the top down if it's not part of Supervalu's everyday culture. And the most innovative companies — in any industry — focus on...

The heyday of the print catalog has passed, for many of the reasons mentioned in the article. The production and mailing costs are high, and e-commerce provides a more cost-efficient and targeted way to reach consumers.

But I would caution Victoria's Secret against dropping the catalog completely — to some degree...

Has anyone evaluated Kmart employee satisfaction by objective measures? If so, does Kmart have a motivated group of associates, and will new t-shirts help? If not, what will really address issues of employee morale?

Otherwise, I agree with fellow panelists that this is another attempt to grasp at straws (like...

I'll use Target as an example of a store more committed to the occasional "wow" experience than everyday blocking and tackling. The upcoming Marimekko collaboration is bound to draw traffic to Target stores and the website, and to sell out quickly. But the company has been plagued by stock-outs...

A six-foot section is not a big investment of real estate inside a Target store, depending on its location (Electronics? HBA?) and how it is pulled together with other health-related or IoT products. If Target intends to make a statement about its brand leadership in the wellness category, it...

The reshuffling of the J.C. Penney merchant team (and the departure of head merchant and former women's GMM Liz Sweney) signals the new CEO's dissatisfaction with the growth of their women's apparel business. I'm not convinced, however, that yet another private brand is the answer — even in an opportunity...

This may be a good opportunity for Macy's to look at its stale marketing (and especially its sales promotion) with a fresh set of eyes. Macy's is in a promotional rut where all of its print sale events look exactly the same (red and black, coupons, a bunch of...

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