STORES BIG Show - Tuesday, January 12, 2010 - (Page 1)

Tuesday Convention Daily Visit Jesta I.S. Complete end-to-end solutions Sourcing | Retail | POS | SCM at booth 2437! January 12, 2010 To Recast Retail, Focus on Adaptability M onday morning opened with a Super Session entitled “Recasting Retailing: New Rules —and Opportunities — of the Global Economy.” The panel discussion, moderated by Stacy Janiak, vice chairman and U.S. retail leader, Deloitte, involved Howard Levine, chairman and CEO, Family Dollar; Allen Questrom, former CEO of J.C. Penney Company and Federated Department Stores; and Mark Zandi, chief economist, Moody’s Both the retail industry and consumers adapted to doing more with less in 2009, Janiak said in her introduction. Her first question, to Zandi, centered around whether we would continue to do that in 2010 or whether the economy might improve. “The economy today is measurably better than it was a year ago, and it will be measurably better than this a year from now,” Zandi replied. The most significant index of this, he said, is job growth. After a year of brutal shrinkage, the employment market is beginning to recover — or at least to shrink more slowly—and by a Strong, Able Independents Doing Well eorge Whalin, president and CEO of Retail Management Consultants, moderated a session entitled “Inside the 25 Best Independent Stores in America” late Monday morning. The title was something of a misnomer — there were presentations by the managers of two independent retailers, not 25. (The reference is to Whalin’s book, Retail Superstars: Inside the 25 Best Independent Stores in America, which Tom Peters recently called “the best business book of 2009.”) “IndepenGeorge Whalin dent retailing is alive and well — much to the displeasure of the media, who keep trying to say it’s doomed,” Whalin said. “They keep writing stories about independent retailers going out of business, but the truth is, the weak are going out of business. The strong and able are doing well.” One reason for this vitality, said Whalin, is that independents offer relief from what he regards as the stultifying sameness of much of the chain-store sector. “We are chain-stored to death,” he said. “Walk into any mall, and half the stores there are just dead boring.” Whalin then talked about a couple of the retailers covered in his book, who, whatever else you may say about them, cannot be accused of hyper-conformity. Jungle Jim’s International Market, in Fairfield, Ohio, is a 300,000-sq.-ft. grocery store that See “Independent” on page 26 G Former J.C. Penney Company and Federated Department Stores CEO Allen Questrom. year from now, Zandi expects to see real growth of somewhere around 150,000 jobs per month. Zandi and the other speakers credited last year’s massive economic stimulus package for this improvement, and said it is directly reflected in retail sales. “Core retail sales for Christmas 2008 were down 4 percent,” he said. “This past December showed a 1 to 2 percent recovery from 2008, and Christmas 2010 should see growth of 3 to 4 percent.” “I think what we have to come to terms with,” said Questrom, “is the fact See “Recasting” on page 24 Sustainability from Small Scale to Large eeking that sustainability “gamechanger”? Be careful not to overlook the small efforts that can add up along the way. Of course, if you’re a company like Wal-Mart — with a supplier base of 100,000 and an employee roster of 2.2 million — no scale is really “small.” Simply turning off the vending machine lights in company break rooms — an idea submitted by an attentive store manager — saved the company $1.4 million. But even if you can’t personally relate to those numbers, start doing something somewhere, said participants in Monday morning’s Super Session “Sustainability in Retail—Increasing Profitability and Impacting the World.” It won’t just foster Peter Graf, Matt Kistler and moderator Ken Saeckl (left to right) See “Sustainability” on page 25 S

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of STORES BIG Show - Tuesday, January 12, 2010

STORES BIG Show - Tuesday, January 12, 2010