Sears Goes for Mall Makeover
By George Anderson
While it seems clear that Sears Holdings sees its future outside of mall locations, the simple fact is the company has 900 or so Sears stores inside facilities located around the country.
The company hired former Target executive Luis Padilla as merchandising president to help it remake its image and “win back middle- to upper-income moms ages 35 to 50,” reports the Chicago Tribune.
Mr. Padilla has been leading the remake with changes being made from “merchandise displays to lighting,” according to an unidentified source who recently attended a meeting held by the retailer to introduce planned changes for its stores.
The meeting was held in Westfield Hawthorn in Vernon Hills, Ill. The retailer views this as a laboratory location where it can test new concepts with consumers.
Among the changes Mr. Padilla and company have planned is a greater emphasis on “hard lines,” including appliances, tools and furnishings.
According to the Trib report, Sears has conceded “its softer side won’t save it” and that it needs to change the space ratio of “soft lines” to “hard lines.” Sears has been giving 60 percent of its floor space to apparel, although the category only produces 20 percent of its sales.
Sears also plans to make better use of the reduced space it will give to clothing and accessories with lines such as children’s Toughskins and Winnie the Pooh.
Moderator’s Comment: What must Sears do to win back “middle- to upper-income moms ages 35 to 50”? Do you have confidence that Luis Padilla and his team
– George Anderson – Moderator
- Sears hopes revamp at area store will help
cure its mall malaise – The Chicago Tribune (free reg. required)