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Macy’s Targets Jewelry To Drive Sales Rebound

May 15, 2016 9:26 AM   By Rapaport News
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Macy’s is embarking on a nationwide initiative to offer better-quality jewelry and improve the skills of its selling staff to mitigate tough market conditions.

The department store plans to roll out the project across 350 stores by year-end 2016. The move was piloted in 40 outlets in fall of last year.

The program comes as Macy’s continues to report disappointing performance figures, with sales declining 7.4 percent from a year ago to $5.77 billion in the first quarter that ended April 30 partly because of 41 store closures in 2015. Comparable sales on an owned-plus-licensed basis slipped 5.6 percent. The company lowered its fiscal-year 2016 comparable-sales forecast to a decrease in the range of 3 to 4 percent from earlier guidance of a 1-percent drop.

“As we rebuild our business for a comeback that we expect will begin later this year, we continue to focus on agility and innovation,” said Terry Lundgren, Macy’s chairman and chief executive officer. This includes “supporting and testing new ideas and approaches so we can identify the best way to serve evolving customer needs, and moving fast to scale up the most successful pilots on a broader basis,” the executive added.

“We tested a new approach to our fine jewelry and watch business in 2015,” chief financial officer Karen Hoguet said in a call to investors in February. “It involves strengthening selling skills, including changes needed to talent, training and compensation. It also included improved associate availability, more direct supervision and a higher-quality product offering.”

Macy’s closed a specialty jewelry store in Honolulu, Hawaii, and transferred the business into a general Macy’s store in the same mall, the company added.
Tags: Jewelry, macy's, Rapaport News, retail
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