STORES Magazine - January 2010 - (Page 25)

EXECUTIVE SUITE / CEO PROFILE Small Towns, Big Business Stage Stores maintains its focus on under-served communities BY ED McKINLEY But melding big-city fashion sense and business acumen with small-town values, tastes and logistics comes naturally to Hall, who arrived at Stage Stores as president and COO in 2006 following a dozen years as a May Company executive (he was named Stage CEO in 2008). He had worked his way up through various May divisions to become chairman of Houston-based Foley’s when the company was acquired by Federated Department Stores (now Macy’s) in 2005. When Federated opted against maintaining a Houston headquarters, “I decided to look elsewhere, and that’s when I was exposed to Stage,” Hall says. “I started to learn about the Stage business model and was really smitten.” Stage pursues the small-town customers that other department “If I can put a Stage store next to every smalltown Walmart in the country, that would be a good thing.” – Andrew Hall, Stage Stores stores tend to ignore. Its “bread and butter is going into small towns [of] 8,000 to 10,000 people … and with a 50,000-person draw within 10 miles. “Our stores look a lot like big-city moderate department stores,” he says. “We just happen to be in 15,000 to 17,000 sq. ft.,” primarily because Stage stores don’t carry traditional home department staples like furniture, small appliances, linens and towels. Hall admits to not having paid much attention to Stage Stores while he was at Foley’s, even though the two chains were based in Houston. That mostly stemmed from the fact that there wasn’t much competition between the two. In fact, Stage Stores has virtually no rivals in small-town America, says Hall. “It’s really fascinating because it’s a business model that’s devoid of competition. There’s nobody else in town so it’s an under-served community.” The chain’s commitment to bringing deAndrew Hall partment store shopping to small towns dates STORES / JANUARY 2010 25 rowds of tourists and locals share Midtown Manhattan’s early evening sidewalks while uniformly yellow cabs crawl up and down the broad busy avenues. In the midst of it all, more than 750 fashionistas have convened in a ballroom at the Grand Hyatt Hotel to honor four of their own for humanitarian works. In the retailer-of-the-year category, the Fashion Delivers Charitable Foundation recognizes Andrew Hall, president and CEO of Stage Stores, for reaching out to the community in his company’s headquarters city of Houston. For Hall, the scale and glitz of the gala contrast sharply with life in the rural parts of the country where most of the chain’s 758 Bealls, Goody’s, Palais Royal, Peebles and Stage stores are located. In a very real sense, he runs the last of the small-town department store chains. WWW.STORES.ORG http://WWW.STORES.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of STORES Magazine - January 2010

STORES Magazine - January 2010
Editor's Page
President’s Page
Retail People
CEO Profile
20 Ideas Worth Stealing
Digital Coupons
Customer Loyalty
Labor Scheduling
Data Management
Human Resources
Retail Fraud
Loeb Retail Letter
ARTS Update
NRF News
Point of View
Retail Industry Calendar
End Cap
Global Powers of Retailing

STORES Magazine - January 2010