What: We’ve all been waiting to find out what luxury brands like Saks and Neiman Marcus do to weather the Recession storm. Seems they’ve come up with a solution: order less stuff. Yep, that’s right, uppity chains like these are planning to cut back on their inventory and generate more demand for it as a result. This means they won’t have to resort to huge sales to get shoppers into their stores.
What They Say:
“Across the board you are going to find less of the sizes, less of the availability in almost all of the categories,” Stephen Sadove [Saks CEO], 57, said yesterday in a telephone interview. “You are probably going to see less aggressive markdowns than you saw last year.”
What We Say: Okay, so here’s what’s going on. Saks is too stubborn to come down to our level. Instead of compromising their upscale identity, they’re just making their apparel more valuable by providing less of it. On one hand, we’re bummed and hoping this plan will backfire on them. On the other hand, we’re thinking it’s kind of a logical move.
The bottom line, though, is we can’t afford to splurge at Saks anymore, regardless of the availability of our favorite clothes and accessories. We don’t predict this will dramatically change too much. In fact, it may just disgruntle the customers who actually can afford to shop at Saks, but now can’t find what they’re looking for.