Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Growing Penney’s-Macy’s rivalry

October 12, 2009

macys1Check out the growing J.C. Penney-Macy’s rivalry.

Liz Claiborne’s plan, announced last week, to sell its namesake sportswear only at Penney stores and on a TV shopping network will end a decades-long tie between the Claiborne franchise and Macy’s.

The deal will give Penney more exclusive products, guarantee revenue and profits for Claiborne and free up Macy’s to better differentiate itself as its customer base increasingly overlaps with Penney’s, analysts and consultants said.

Macy’s has traditionally been positioned as a little higher-end than Penney, but the 2005 merger of Macy’s owner Federated Department Stores with May Department Stores broadened the customer base and brought the company into more direct competition with Penney, analysts said. Penney, meanwhile, has been expanding its reach into Macy’s territory.

Department stores like Macy’s and Penney have beefed up their exclusive label offerings to woo shoppers to their stores and reduce competition centered on price. 
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(Reuters photo)


Macy’s has nothing to worry about. I was in one of JCP’s new style stores that opened recently this past weekend. I was very unimpressed It didn’t even hold a cancel to Kohl’s, which is far below Macy’s. Both Kohl’s and JCP are constantly on sale. I’d like to see what there sales would be without as many sales. I am sure dismal.

Posted by Jason | Report as abusive

This is good news for Macy’s, who can now free up more floor space for better goods. Liz Claiborne’s styles and quality has plummeted in the past decade, especially in the Woman division. Selections are so small, there’s only a few styles at any one time from which to select. I imagine this will extend to handbags and accessories also (there’s quite a range of style and quality but nothing that can’t be replaced with another brand) and there’s a men’s division called Claiborne which probably will go too (their styles are nice). In all, good news for Macy’s.

Posted by KatySCSCSC | Report as abusive

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