Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Perhaps it was a blessing that Wal-Mart's upscale fashion line failed when it did

You heard about this, right? "Target Corp.'s first-quarter profit dropped 7.5% as the economic downturn has left consumers with less money to spend on discretionary items." Well, it's not my fault.

Meanwhile Wal-Mart's "first-quarter profit rose 6.9%, driven in part by consumers responding to its low-price message and buying food, groceries and generic prescription drugs in one-stop trips, analysts said."

So everyone's going to Wal-Mart to save on necessities. Makes total sense. Except: "The mega-retailer is also pushing items such as flat-panel televisions to increase its share of the electronics market. It's featuring meal solutions for $10 as more consumers eat at home amid the economic downturn. Wal-Mart is touting apparel for $10 or less and is adding exclusive merchandise such as Iconix Brand Group's Ocean Pacific and OP brands and Jones Apparel Group's l.e.i. line of clothing for teens. On its lagging home-goods sales, Wal-Mart is touting 'vacation in your backyard,' with merchandise such as grills and patio sets."

It's the Target $1 aisle in reverse, isn't it? Bizarro! Could Wal-Mart become a fashion powerhouse after all?

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