KMART SLASHES DIVIDEND: Kmart Corp. on Tuesday cut its quarterly dividend in half, to 12 cents a share, and said it expects a loss in this year's first quarter. The discounter said the dividend was cut in...
KMART SLASHES DIVIDEND: Kmart Corp. on Tuesday cut its quarterly dividend in half, to 12 cents a share, and said it expects a loss in this year's first quarter. The discounter said the dividend was cut in line with earnings expectations for the year. It noted that while first-quarter cost reductions and sales are on plan, gross margins are below plan. The expected loss will be exclusive of a one-time gain of 14 cents a share from the replacement of a pension plan with a profit sharing plan. The first-quarter loss reflects a previously announced change in the inventory accounting method, which will reduce earnings by an estimated 12 cents a share in the quarter. In the year-ago quarter, Kmart earned 3 cents a share from continuing operations. Kmart said the accounting change will have no impact on the full year's results. Edward Johnson, Johnson Redbook Services, said Kmart's action was justified based on its earnings prospects. He said there is a "50-50 chance" the dividend will be reduced further if Kmart can't show improved profitability. Kmart said it will review the dividend quarterly, taking into account capital needs and earnings, and also noted it was terminating its shareholder rights plan (poison pill) in compliance with a proposal approved at the annual meeting. Kmart stock closed Tuesday at 14 7/8, down 1/2, on the New York Stock Exchange.
LOOKING AT A LOSS: With sales down and markdowns up, Venture Stores Inc. said it expects to report an operating loss in the first quarter, which ends Saturday. The O'Fallon, Mo.-based discounter said the net loss in the period will reflect a $3.6 million charge related to the completion of a remerchandising program, which began late last year. In the year-ago first quarter, Venture reported a profit of $1.2 million, or 3 cents per share. In an announcement late last week, Venture did not specify the size of its expected operating loss in the quarter, but said it would be "substantially below" year-ago profits.
SEARS NAMES FOOTWEAR VP: William A. Giovanello, a former senior vice president and general merchandise manager of Lazarus Department Stores, has been named divisional vice president of footwear at Sears, effective May 15. He succeeds Martin Gershik, who left Sears to join Woolworth Corp. this month as vice president and general merchandise manager of its Kinney shoe-store chain. Giovanello was responsible for women's accessories, cosmetics, intimate apparel and men's and women's shoes at Lazarus' 48 stores. He will be responsible for men's, women's and children's footwear at Sears. He reports to Jack Guze, group vice president and general merchandise manager of men's and children's apparel and family footwear.
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty