Kohl’s and Sephora Announce a Long-Term Partnership

This week, Sephora and Kohl’s announced a long-term strategic alliance. This partnership is intended to bring a new era in elevated Beauty at Kohl’s. It will link Kohl’s vast customer reach and omnichannel convenience to Sephora’s exceptional quality service, product selection, and extraordinary beauty experience.

A Kohl’s press release states that the partnership will be called “Sephora @ Kohl’s” and will offer a premium, immersive beauty experience. The store’s 2,500-square-foot space will be displayed at the front. When the first 200 stores open in fall 2021 the Kohls.com online beauty section will also convert to include a wider selection of Sephora products. Sephora at Kohl’s plans to expand to at least 850 stores by 2023.

CNBC interviewed Michelle Gass, Kohl’s CEO this week, about the department store chain’s focus on beauty.

Gass stated, “With all of the disruption in the retail sector, we’ve really taken back and asserted an new strategy to be a destination for all things active casual wellness and beauty for family.” We’re going to make certain categories, such as active and athleisure and beauty, bigger, then we’ll downsize or exit other categories. […] Kohls is a huge company, but we are very underrepresented in beauty. We serve 65 million customers, 70% of which are women, and they have been telling us that they want a bolder, bigger experience in beauty.

Sephora isn’t the only retailer that has partnered up with Sephora. J.C. Penney was the first partner of Sephora in 2006. Jean-Andre Rougeot is Sephora Americas CEO and explained why Kohl’s was the right choice to be the next partner.

Rougeot stated that “we obviously have a large.com presence.” Our problem is our reach. There are only 500 stores in the country, most of which are located in traditional shopping centers. We have not been able reach American suburbia. […] This deal is great because we can leverage Kohl’s extensive network, but also because its locations are convenient. That’s why consumers will be able find Sephora beauty products in a convenient and easy way close to their homes.

Total Retail’s View: Opening mini-Sephora stores in Kohl’s locations could prove to be a win-win situation for both companies. Nearly three quarters of Kohl’s customers, who are mostly women, have been asking for more beauty products from the department store. Rougeot said that Kohl’s customers might be the first to discover Sephora through this partnership. “Sephora at Kohl’s” will make it easier for suburban shoppers to shop the beauty brand. This agreement replaces the Sephora partnership with J.C. Penney and is similar to the Target and announcements earlier this month about plans to open skincare and makeup shops in hundreds of Target stores. This move could also allow Kohl’s cater to a younger customer base. It also speaks to the potential growth that retailers and brands see for the beauty category in-store as well as online.

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Source: https://www.mytotalretail.com/article/kohls-and-sephora-announce-long-term-partnership/

francesca’s Files to Protect Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Francesca’s, a women’s boutique chain, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last Wednesday. Plans were to sell the business and its brick-and mortar stores. Francesa’s announced that it had obtained $25 million from Tiger Finance to help facilitate the sale of its retail stores. This was subject to court approval.

Francesca, a Houston-based company, previously announced plans for closing 140 boutiques and plans to renegotiate many leases during the process. This could include closing additional boutiques. Today, 558 stores are still open. francesca’s has also stated that it currently has an offer from TerraMar Capital to buy its business. TerraMar Capital is an investment firm that provides equity and debt capital to middle-market companies. This bidder will be francesca’s stalking horse. francesca stated that it hopes to close the sale by January.

Total Retail’s View: Francesca filed for bankruptcy in the middle of 2020, when the struggling retail chain was running out of options. The clothing chain joins Guitar Center, New York & Company and J.C. Penney. After companies have completed the holidays, they are able to reassess their businesses’ health and file for bankruptcy in the early part of 2021.

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Source: https://www.mytotalretail.com/article/francescas-files-for-chapter-11-bankruptcy-protection/

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