The dog days of summer have sent a chill through another regional department store chain as family-owned Boscov’s Department Stores has become the latest non-national player to lose at least some support in the credit community.
Vendor and credit sources said the factoring arm of CIT’s trade finance group on Monday put a “hold” on future orders to the Reading, Pa.-based chain. One source said CIT wanted more information from the retailer before committing to approval on future orders. CIT has not pulled support for back orders.
Recent orders that were approved, but not yet shipped, are not affected by Monday’s decision.
A spokeswoman for CIT declined comment Thursday. A call for comment to Russell Diehm, Boscov’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, was not returned by press time.
One credit source said other factors have followed CIT’s path and are also holding approval pending more information from the retailer.
Some sources in the vendor community said they have been waiting for payment on previously shipped orders and contacts in the credit community said that even some big-name vendors have experienced slowness in payment.
Market estimates put Boscov’s sales at just over $1 billion, making it among the largest privately held department store companies in the U.S. The largest is Belk Inc., which had sales of $3.82 billion in 2007.
Boscov’s currently has 49 stores in six states in the mid-Atlantic region. The chain’s brand assortment includes Liz Claiborne, Tommy Hilfiger, Champion, Calvin Klein and Elizabeth Arden. Some stores also carry Clinique, Estée Lauder and Lancôme, according to the company.
Founded by Solomon Boscov, the 75-year-old chain is owned by the families of Albert Boscov, Solomon’s son, and Edwin Lakin, a son-in-law, according to the company. The stores were recapitalized two years ago, giving 5 percent of ownership to nonfamily management.
Ken Lakin, Edwin’s son, is chairman and chief executive officer of the holding company for the department stores. Burton Krieger is president and chief merchandising officer of the department stores, Ed McKeaney is executive vice president and chief operating officer and Sam Flamholz is executive vice president and director of retail merchandise planning.
The Boscov’s merchandising team consists of five general merchandise managers, 14 divisional merchandise managers, 66 buyers, 48 assistant buyers, 12 planners, 50 store managers and 53 assistant store managers.
Regional department stores have been hard-pressed to compete with national retail chains in the last few years, and that pressure has grown in recent months as consumers have shopped less and lenders have been more selective about their financing. Mervyns lost factoring support last week while Goody’s Family Clothing Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy court protection in June.�
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia