Topshop has had a major impact on the women’s business at Nordstrom.
Last summer, the two companies revealed a partnership under which Nordstrom would add the trendy British retailer’s line to 14 stores around the U.S. The customer reaction has been strong and on its first-quarter earnings call Thursday afternoon, Nordstrom Inc. said the collection will be rolled out to another 28 stores in late September or October and 30 additional stores in early 2014.
“It behooves both Topshop and us to get it going as quickly as possible,” said Pete Nordstrom, president of merchandising. “I would say in general it’s been productive — more productive than the average department in women’s. So, when you combine that with the fact that it attracts a lot of new customers as well, it’s been a good thing for us.”
The introduction of Topshop merchandise helped drive women’s wear sales to among the best-performing categories in the period, and is having an effect on the store’s young women’s department as a whole.
“One of the ways in which we increase our relevance with customers is through product innovation,” said Blake Nordstrom, president. “Within the women’s apparel area, which continues to perform above our multichannel average, we repositioned our Savvy department during the quarter, to maintain its trendy fashion appeal but at more accessible prices. It is too early to evaluate its overall performance, but we’re excited about this important strategic change to further enhance our product offering and build on the learnings from our partnership with Topshop.”
Pete Nordstrom said the average price points within the Savvy department have dropped “considerably, and that has made a brilliant, interesting difference for us. In total, it’s really benefited women’s apparel.”
He also pointed to the improvement the company has had with its private label, NPG. “We’ve had really good success with our private label brands in women’s and really excellent growth, which has not only been great for the top line, but it’s very good for our margins as well.”
Overall, in the first quarter ended May 4, a soft sales trend in the beginning of the period led to a fall of 2.7 percent in net income to $145 million, or 73 cents a diluted share, from $149 million, or 70 cents, a year ago. Net revenues rose 4.7 percent to $2.75 billion from $2.63 billion. That includes a 4.8 percent gain in net sales to $2.66 billion, with the balance of revenues from credit card income. The company said same-store sales rose 2.7 percent, which was on top of an 8.5 percent gain in the year-ago period.
In addition to women’s wear, top categories in the quarter included cosmetics and handbags. Men’s wear was a “solid performer” in the period, according to Pete Nordstrom, with strength across the board, particularly in tailored clothing. He credited the company’s men’s buying team with “evolving the assortment” to be “more modern and relevant.”
In April, overall sales trends showed improvement.
The retail chain said it expected annual diluted annual earnings per share in line with the prior outlook of $3.65 to $3.80, which anticipates full-year same-store sales increases of 3 to 5 percent.
By business, the company said full-line same-store sales were flat versus last year’s same-store sale increase of 5.6 percent. Direct continued to generate strong sales growth, rising 25 percent in the quarter on top of last year’s gain of 44 percent. Nordstrom Rack sales saw a 10 percent jump, reflecting 16 store openings since the first quarter of fiscal 2012, as same-store sales rose 0.8 percent on top of last year’s gain of 6.8 percent.
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
London-based couture house @ralphandrusso has certainly been in the spotlight, having its dresses worn by @beyonce, Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle in her engagement photos and more. For couture, Tamara Ralph focused on ornamentation — think: feathers with chain mail, jet embroidery and clusters of pearls and crystals. See the rest of the collection on WWD.com #wwdfashion #couture (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)