RIBBON-CUTTING ORGY: In a move ambitious even by its own standards, Wal-Mart will open 24 new supercenters today. The supercenter concept, which combines a full-line supermarket with a conventional discount store, is currently Wal-Mart's key growth strategy in the U.S. The stores range from 100,000 to 200,000 square feet. The format uses low grocery prices to entice shoppers, who also can purchase Wal-Mart's apparel and hard lines, which are priced low, but with higher margins. Among today's supercenter openings are: Rome, N.Y.; Clearfield, Pa., and Culpeper, Va. These are Wal-Mart's first supercenters in those states. With the end of its fiscal year Tuesday, Wal-Mart will have 144 supercenters in operation. The company said another 100 units are planned for the fiscal year ending in January 1996. Of those, 85 are conversions of existing discount stores. Ed Comeau, an analyst at Lehman Bros., said, however, that he believes Wal-Mart will open as many as 115 supercenters and fewer than the planned 100 conventional discount stores. He said Wal-Mart was experiencing problems opening discount stores in upstate New York, the Pacific Northwest and Vermont due to development and community opposition issues. For that reason, expansion efforts may be stepped up on the supercenter side in other communities, he noted. "They're refocusing some real estate and development efforts toward supercenters," he said, "and they're having increasing levels of success [operating] them."
MORE VALUE: Value City Department Stores will make its debut in the Detroit and St. Louis markets this spring. In the St. Louis market, an 85,000-square-foot unit will open in Webster Groves, Mo., and additional sites in the area are being eyed, according to a spokesman. The first St. Louis store will be housed in a former Builders Square unit. Two stores are planned for Detroit. Last fall, Value City opened its first three stores in the Chicago area and a fourth unit is expected to open in that market late this year. Based in Columbus, Ohio, Value City operates 78 discount stores in the Midwest and East.
OUT IN APRIL: Rose's Stores said it has exceeded 1994 operating cash flow requirements to have its court-approved Chapter 11 reorganization plan become effective in April. The company did not specify the cash flow amount, but said it is negotiating the final terms of an $80 million post-reorganization financing deal. Rose's, based in Henderson, N.C., operates 113 discount stores in 10 Southeastern states. As reported, Rose's plan of reorganization was approved Dec. 14. Under the terms of the plan, trade and other unsecured creditors will be given 100 percent of the stock of Rose's in settlement of their claims.
@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