It's been another week with far more retail news than there is time in the day. Below, we break down some things you may have missed during the week and what we're still thinking about.
From L'Occitane receiving approval for its reorganization plan to Ace Hardware opening over a hundred stores, here's our closeout for the week.
What you may have missed
L'Occitane is almost out of bankruptcy
L'Occitane, on Tuesday, announced that the company received approval for its reorganization plan and expects to emerge from Chapter 11 at the end of the month. The beauty retailer filed for bankruptcy in January with plans to immediately close some stores as it attempted to shed unprofitable and declining locations. The company has since restructured its U.S. lease portfolio and now has 133 store locations (down from its 166 at the time of filing) which will create "a sustainable store platform for the long term," according to a company press release.
Walmart launches inclusive baby care line with Dove
On Tuesday, Walmart and Dove launched an inclusive baby care line "designed to meet the specific needs of babies with melanin-rich skin and textured hair," Ralph Clare, vice president of merchandise, baby and consumables at Walmart U.S., said in the announcement. Walmart claims to be the first major retailer to unveil an offering that fills that gap in the market. The products, which range from $5.97 to $17.97, are available exclusively at Walmart stores and Walmart.com.
"This launch is just the beginning," Clare said. "We plan to grow and expand our multicultural skin and haircare category with new brands and products over the next few years as we continue to address this gap and serve the evolving needs of our customers."
Purple's CFO steps down
Bennett Nussbaum, who has more than 45 years of experience leading financial teams at Pepsi-Cola International, Burger King and FedEx Office, will serve as CFO in the interim.
Ace set to open over 170 stores this year
Ace Hardware has been able to continue its momentum into 2021 after the home improvement category experienced strong demand last year. The retailer on Thursday announced it has already opened 110 new stores this year and plans to open at least 60 more by year's end.
The retailer, which has a cooperative business model, operates 5,500 locally owned stores across 70 countries.
Re-tail has gone to the dogs
While most dogs are perfectly happy to drink out of a toilet, some pups are VERY fancy and want Hermès. Specifically, they howl for this "dog bowl, small model" which retails for $1,125 and is "a combination of marine inspiration and craftsmanship reminiscent of the equestrian world" and "moves effortlessly between land and sea to the joy of man's best friend."
It's oak, made in France, inspired by the luxury retailer's Chaine d'Ancre motif and complies with traditional barrel-making techniques because that is also extremely important to dogs.
But this isn't a single bowl like some plebeian would eat and drink out of. Oh no. These are two separate bowls that join together with magnets.
Want one? That's ruff. Because as of publication time, this delightful object is no longer available.
What we're still thinking about
That's the number of shop-in-shops Ulta and Target have opened together so far in a partnership that is eventually supposed to reach 800. The retailers are planning to have 100 open by the end of the third quarter, and Ulta execs said they are already "thrilled" with the customer response. (Sephora's shop-in-shops at Kohl's also began rolling out this month, and the retailers are planning for 200 by October.)
Thought we were done talking about Target? Think again. Ulta isn't the only shop-in-shop experience Target is doubling down on. The mass merchant is tripling the number of Disney shop-in-shops it offers to more than 160 as the holidays approach, a play to deepen its toy positioning. Traditional toy stalwart Toys R Us is planning to open 400 shop-in-shops at Macy's, a hefty footprint for a retailer that practically disappeared from the market after its bankruptcy, but those won't open until after this year's holiday season.
What we're watching
DTC brands going public
DTC darling Warby Parker filed for a direct listing this week, rather than an IPO, with plans to list its stock under the symbol, "WRBY." That came a couple months after the retailer confidentially filed with the SEC for a public listing. As with DTC brands before it, Warby Parker's filings revealed its struggle to reach profitability. In a hot go-public market that also saw running brand On file for an IPO this week, we're watching for more brands to file (Allbirds? You coming?) and for what it tells us about their financials.