WWD.com/fashion-news/fashion-features/networking-grand-huckster-karl-reflections-on-tv-macy-s-designing-arnolds-1154946/
government-trade
government-trade

Networking: Grand Huckster Karl … Reflections on TV Macy’s … Designing Arnolds

<STRONG>GRAND HUCKSTER KARL</STRONG> <BR><BR>Is Karl Lagerfeld ready to take his act to the airwaves? He had lunch with Diane Von Furstenberg, the godmother of QVC, in Paris on Friday.<BR><BR>"It's still too early to give details, but I like the idea...

GRAND HUCKSTER KARL

Is Karl Lagerfeld ready to take his act to the airwaves? He had lunch with Diane Von Furstenberg, the godmother of QVC, in Paris on Friday.

“It’s still too early to give details, but I like the idea [of going on QVC],” said Lagerfeld. “There’s a great future in it and everything Diane touches works. I think she’s an amazing person and businesswoman.”

He added that Von Furstenberg would be his reason for getting involved.

REFLECTIONS ON TV MACY’S

Federated Department Stores’ move to purchase a large chunk of R.H. Macy & Co.’s debt may not lead to a takeover of Macy’s, but if it does, industry observers wonder how TV Macy’s — the home shopping network due to be launched — this fall, would fare.

According to analysts, Federated appears somewhat cool to the idea of home shopping.

A source close to Macy’s said, “TV Macy’s is part of the five-year reorganization plan. Upon emergence from bankruptcy, they feel they’ll have a strong independent company.”

According to Macy executive vice president Tom Shull, TV Macy’s has up to $150 million to play with through an agreement it reached with creditors.

“We don’t have plans at this stage to make a capital investment in TV Macy’s,” he said. “We’re continuing to develop the concept and are working with our vendor partners to explore ways of working with them in this new venue.

“The situation with Federated doesn’t threaten us in any way,” he added.

Retail analysts aren’t so sure.

“I think that deal is in jeopardy while [Macy’s] is in bankruptcy court,” said James M. Meyer, director of research for Janney, Montgomery, Scott in Philadelphia. “I don’t think you can justify making a $75 million investment [the price Meyer puts on starting a cable channel] while you’re in bankruptcy. It’s one of the things Federated has to look at.”

DESIGNING ARNOLDS

Roseanne Arnold has never been known for her sartorial style, but with a tawdry Vanity Fair cover under her garter belt, Arnold is ready to take on the fashion pundits.

In April, the brassy star will launch a line of plus-size clothing to be sold on Via TV, a Knoxville, Tenn.-based home shopping network. It will consist of outerwear, knitwear, lingerie and sportswear.

While several TV shopping networks reportedly had been interested in signing Arnold to a licensing agreement, CelebSales, a New York-based manufacturer, met her in Iowa, where she has a home, and sealed the deal.

There is also a Tom Arnold collection, named after Roseanne’s husband, in the works.

“He’s not a great dresser,” said a CelebSales spokeswoman. “We’ll have to take a very basic approach.”