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At Home Depot, four triggers to a private-label program

BY HBSDEALER Staff

As the world’s largest home improvement retailer intends to leverage its private-label offerings across its businesses in the United States, Mexico and Canada, its top merchandising executive described the process for choosing a private-label brand.

There are four triggers that drive a private-label program, said Craig Menear, executive VP merchandising, during the company’s recent Analyst and Investor Conference. They are:

• Lack of brand relevance. ("If a brand doesn’t carry its weight with a customer, the category could very likely become private label," he said.);

• Lack of innovation;

• A financial issue that needs to be solved in the business; and

• A quality issue or opportunity. 

" If there is a quality problem, or a significant opportunity to improve the quality and also drive a stronger value proposition for the customer, we’ll look to private label or exclusive product," he said. 

Proprietary and private-label brands combined represent about 14% of the company’s business, Menear said. Any growth in these categories will ultimately be determined by customer wants and needs, he added.

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Southern Calif. homes suffer through record rain

BY HBSDEALER Staff

According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, Southern California residents scrambled to fight a losing battle with rain and floods.

In areas of San Bernardino, mud invaded blocks of homes, according to the article. Even San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium, home of the Chargers, flooded.

The Sorrento Valley location of J&W Lumber, a six-unit chain of lumberyards throughout San Diego County, was flooded with several feet of water.

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At Bed Bath & Beyond, a strong Q3

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Union, N.J.-based Bed Bath & Beyond posted third-quarter earnings of $188.6 million, up 24.6% from $151.3 million in the same quarter last year.

Sales in the three months ended Nov. 27 increased 11.1% to $2.19 billion, up from $1.98 billion last year. Comparable-store sales for the quarter increased by 7.0%.

The results exceeded the company’s internal planning assumptions, according to CEO Steven Temares. "While it appears that the economic environment has stabilized and is perhaps improving, persistent high unemployment and uncertainty in the economy could continue to pressure consumers and affect their spending. However … we remain cautiously optimistic about the remainder of the year."

As of Nov. 27, the company had a total of 1,127 stores, including 976 Bed Bath & Beyond stores in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada, 66 Christmas Tree Shops stores, 40 buybuy BABY stores and 45 stores under the names of Harmon or Harmon Face Values.

During the third quarter, the company opened five Bed Bath & Beyond stores, five Christmas Tree Shops stores, and seven buybuy BABY stores. Consolidated store space as of Nov. 27 was approximately 34.7 million sq. ft.

The company also announced that its board authorized a new $2 billion share repurchase program.

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