Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

SamSpade
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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by SamSpade » July 12th, 2019, 11:18 am

Nordstrom even seems to be losing ground in eBar sales.
I have not seen two long time employees at downtown Portland and the new staff can't even make a solid latte. :roll:

They did mark up pastries a bit and pull a "Starbucks"-ization of the menu (only the grande size price and a smattering of items displayed) early this year. . . maybe about the time retail Q1 started.

At another location in this market, a cookie I'd not seen before was on display. The poor counter employee I asked about it wasn't even sure what was in it other than it was a "breakfast cookie," and she had to interrupt the other two baristas who were giggling and playing with a smart phone to find out more information. Really turned me off, 2 bad experiences in the same week, during high-traffic Anniversary Sale.

... also Anniversary sale bags this year are bright yellow and white, like traditional retailer "sale" bags and signs might be, instead of the more style-focused color palettes (or sometimes continuing with the understated earth tones) used in the past.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by storewanderer » July 12th, 2019, 11:39 am

buckguy wrote:
July 12th, 2019, 9:01 am
Given Dillard's overall financial performance over quite a few years, I'd say Reno is an outlier. They have closed a lot of stores in other markets and have done particularly poorly in their more northerly markets. Their neglect has been much greater than Macy's--Its only in the last decade that they've updated many stores they bought in the 80s which had opened in the 60s or 70s. Owning real estate in an era when malls are dying probably isn't the smart investment it would have been 25 years ago. I suspect that the Dillards will ultimately sell out to private equity which will run what's left of the chain into the ground. The obviously have no talent for merchandising and were very late to online retail. It's just a matter of time.
Well, Nordstrom is the one who has been talking about going private. I think they scrapped that plan last year, but we will see if that idea comes up again at some point in the future.

I would agree that owning real estate in malls is questionable but it is a lot easier to operate stores when you are doing so in stores you own and have paid for, than in stores you are leasing and dealing with a landlord and ever-escalating lease costs on. Not to mention the highly leveraged retailers have to deal with various odd debt covenants that have various compliance requirements that may or may not be beneficial to store operations; these highly leveraged retailers that are selling off properties to raise funds keep failing because of things like this. Dillards with low debt and mostly owned stores does not have to worry about any of that. Dillards store base is also in rather boring southern and midwest markets where real estate values do not bubble the way they do on the east and west coasts.

Dillard's has run on much lower store volumes, lower inventory turns, and fewer promotions than the rest of the department store industry. I am actually surprised they made it out of the last recession, but they did. Had they been highly leveraged and had they not owned so much of their real estate, I highly doubt they would have made it out. If private equity comes in and does its usual raid to the company, it is doomed.

Obviously among customers the Nordstrom brand and name has far more value than Dillard's. Nordstrom is a higher end chain that operates in most major cities that many customers aspire to shop at and has a positive brand image. Nordstrom is a destination store people will travel long distances to shop at. Dillard's runs clean orderly stores in boring parts of the US, many mid sized markets just like places such as Salem, OR and Anchorage, AK which Nordstrom has decided to abandon, that are better than the mid level competitors like Macy's and JC Penney, but not sought after like Nordstrom is.

When the department store industry and malls completely go to extinction, I think Dillard's will be the last chain standing, assuming they maintain their current debt levels and overall financial position. Also keep in mind Dillard's markets, they are a little "behind" the times. Department stores will last longer in those places than the east and west coasts where chains like Nordstrom and Macy's have high concentration. Just like video rental stores did.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by jamcool » July 12th, 2019, 10:54 pm

Dillard’s thrives by being the fashion store in smaller cities that Macy’s won’t go into (cities under 100k in population). And the Dillard family still owns a large share of the company.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by storewanderer » July 12th, 2019, 11:15 pm

jamcool wrote:
July 12th, 2019, 10:54 pm
Dillard’s thrives by being the fashion store in smaller cities that Macy’s won’t go into (cities under 100k in population). And the Dillard family still owns a large share of the company.
The definition of "fashion" in many of Dillard's markets is much different than the definition of "fashion" in many of the markets where Nordstrom is strong.

There is a reason why Dillard's has avoided much of the west coast beyond that Macy's was playing mall anchor space monopoly during the 90's and 00's keeping others from getting anchor spaces in the good malls in California (probably did Dillard's a favor keeping them largely out of California, because I don't think they would have been very successful)...

Dillard's also does not do the hard discounting the rest of the industry does. Beyond clearance they do very little "sale" activity. Most of their clothing has very high retails despite that. Based on my experience with Nordstrom, this is a fairly similar pricing strategy, the difference being Nordstrom does not do much deep clearance but rather ships that stuff to a Rack instead.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by pseudo3d » July 14th, 2019, 6:25 am

storewanderer wrote:
July 12th, 2019, 11:15 pm
jamcool wrote:
July 12th, 2019, 10:54 pm
Dillard’s thrives by being the fashion store in smaller cities that Macy’s won’t go into (cities under 100k in population). And the Dillard family still owns a large share of the company.
The definition of "fashion" in many of Dillard's markets is much different than the definition of "fashion" in many of the markets where Nordstrom is strong.

There is a reason why Dillard's has avoided much of the west coast beyond that Macy's was playing mall anchor space monopoly during the 90's and 00's keeping others from getting anchor spaces in the good malls in California (probably did Dillard's a favor keeping them largely out of California, because I don't think they would have been very successful)...

Dillard's also does not do the hard discounting the rest of the industry does. Beyond clearance they do very little "sale" activity. Most of their clothing has very high retails despite that. Based on my experience with Nordstrom, this is a fairly similar pricing strategy, the difference being Nordstrom does not do much deep clearance but rather ships that stuff to a Rack instead.
Dillard's did a lot of its expansion through acquisitions, probably more than anyone else. The Wikipedia page mentions all the brands Dillard's took over in the 1980s and 1990s, but they excluded one-offs, I know that the Dillard's at La Palmera (formerly Padre Staples Mall) in Corpus Christi, Texas was a local store originally (the current Dillard's in the mall is a newer store to replace the acquired one), and because they tended to radiate out from Arkansas, it's probably why places like California, Michigan, or the Northeast never saw Dillard's. (Dillard's did open a California store in 1998, but even today, there are less than five stores in the state).

Macy's, on the other hand, expanded heavily in California and the Northeast, but because of its NYC cache, only had maybe one or two token stores in other cities. That all changed when Federated decided to convert their other brands to Macy's, along with all the stores they bought when May Co. was taken over.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by rwsandiego » July 14th, 2019, 9:11 pm

SamSpade wrote:
July 12th, 2019, 11:18 am
Nordstrom even seems to be losing ground in eBar sales.
I have not seen two long time employees at downtown Portland and the new staff can't even make a solid latte. :roll:

They did mark up pastries a bit and pull a "Starbucks"-ization of the menu (only the grande size price and a smattering of items displayed) early this year. . . maybe about the time retail Q1 started.

At another location in this market, a cookie I'd not seen before was on display. The poor counter employee I asked about it wasn't even sure what was in it other than it was a "breakfast cookie," and she had to interrupt the other two baristas who were giggling and playing with a smart phone to find out more information. Really turned me off, 2 bad experiences in the same week, during high-traffic Anniversary Sale.

... also Anniversary sale bags this year are bright yellow and white, like traditional retailer "sale" bags and signs might be, instead of the more style-focused color palettes (or sometimes continuing with the understated earth tones) used in the past.
The yellow and white Anniversary Sale bags started showing up in SoCal five or six years ago. They are pretty gaudy, but at least they are not plastic.

Regarding Nordstrom's closing in some of the smaller cities, it seems to be a result of the company's "upping the ante" not resonating with a sufficient number of shoppers in these smaller markets to warrant stores coupled with the ability to buy online. If memory serves, the Anchorage store harkens back to Nordstrom's acquisition of Northern Commercial back in the early 1970's, which was a mere ten years after expanding to carrying clothing after it bought Best Apparel.

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Re: Nordstrom Closing Downtown Anchorage Location

Post by buckguy » July 19th, 2019, 4:09 pm

Dillard may not do a lot of markdowns, but their profits have been halved in the last 5-10 years. They have a model that isn’t sustainable.I wouldn’t be surprised if Belks new owner will eventually acquire them—it would be like a replay of the merger with Mercantile, although there might be some effort to keep Belk as a small market, more lower middlebrow operation for awhile.

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