Macy’s announced a new partnership with gadget specialty retailer Brookstone to bring uniquely designed gifts to 347 stores and macys.com ahead of the holiday season.
Brookstone’s merchandise includes tech-enabled pens, wine openers, massage tools and drones — the kinds of items that are especially popular at the holidays as gift items.
Macy’s last week opened an Apple store within its Herald Square flagship in New York City, becoming the the first department store to house an Apple shop-within-store. Macy’s also will sell the Apple Watch at more than 180 stores nationwide.
Department stores are struggling, and Macy’s in particular appears to be over-stored. The retailer recently said it will close some 100 locations nationwide by 2017, with an expected emphasis on reducing its Midwestern footprint. Macy's also aims to boost its e-commerce sales and omnichannel efforts. With a full 67% of U.S. millennials and 56% of Gen Xers favoring online over in-store shopping, according to L2's Digital IQ Index of Department Stores, there's good reason for that thinking.
But Macy's continues looking for ways to boost store traffic as well, especially at the all-important holiday season, boosting its electronics merchandise profile via partnerships with Apple and Brookstone.
“Brookstone is a brand known for exceptionally innovative products that aim to improve your quality of life and Macy’s is the premiere destination for holiday gifts,” Macy’s Chief Merchandising Officer Tim Baxter said in a statement. “By offering Brookstone at Macy’s — from headphones and speakers to kitchen gadgets or the perfect massage — their extraordinary items will add to our electronic offerings just in time for the holiday shopping season.”
Macy’s is also swimming against the tide at the holidays by not just opening stores on Thanksgiving Day but also opening an hour earlier this year.
Macy's is poised for still more sweeping changes in the year ahead. Longtime CEO Terry Lundgren will step down in the first quarter of 2017. Macy's president Jeff Gennette will step into the CEO position upon Lundgren's departure.
This story is part of our ongoing coverage of the 2016 holiday shopping season. You can browse our holiday page for more stories.