The Talbots, Inc. (NYSE:TLB) today announced that it has opened a new design concept store at the Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey. This unique and innovative 5,500 square foot store features an upscale residential feel, five individual rooms for different merchandise stories, and other exciting elements which bring Talbots “Tradition Transformed” brand platform to life and will appeal to both long-time and new Talbots customers. Talbots Chief Creative Officer Michael Smaldone collaborated with Robin Kramer at Kramer Design Group on the space.
Interior of Talbots' new concept store at the Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey. (Photo: Business Wire)
The Garden State Plaza design concept store pays tribute to the Talbots brand heritage and DNA through its personalized and boutique-like shopping environment. Extensive customer research and feedback drove many of the important features of the store’s design and merchandise presentation, which include a new color palette, a more luxurious fitting room environment, area rugs, marble nesters, ceramic tiles, étagères, brass-rimmed windows and a brass door. The store carries a full assortment of missy and petites merchandise and offers the widest breadth of style choices in apparel, accessories and shoes. As a design concept location, key features in store design, fixtures and merchandise presentation are being evaluated for potential rollout to existing stores in support of the company’s overall store reimage program.
“We are thrilled to bring our customers an innovative and truly inviting shopping environment at our new design concept store in Westfield Garden State Plaza. We look forward to fostering deep relationships with our long term, loyal customers as well as those who may have just recently discovered the brand,” said Trudy F. Sullivan, Talbots President and Chief Executive Officer.
Commenting on the strategy for the new store’s design and features, Michael Smaldone, Chief Creative Officer, said, “The opening of this design concept store is a significant step in continuing to push the Talbots brand forward and offering a premium customer experience across all of our channels. This unique store brings the highest standard of our ‘Tradition Transformed’ platform to our customers and allows us to engage with her through a memorable and more personalized shopping experience that we modeled after a woman’s dream closet. We are delighted with the positive feedback we have received about the store from our customers since the opening.”
In order to deliver the unique an innovative shopping experience of this new design concept store and maintain brand integrity, Talbots partnered with Kramer Design Group on architecture, interior design, graphics and merchandising. Kramer Design Group works with leaders in fashion, home, luxury and lifestyle to capture the essence of a brand and communicate its identity through all facets of the consumer experience. By developing powerful new signatures, revitalizing existing brands, and creating enticing environments, Kramer Design Group brings clarity and focus to each brand, setting them apart from their competitors. Kramer has re-imagined more than 100 brands in the global marketplace.
The Talbots, Inc. is a leading specialty retailer and direct marketer of women’s apparel, shoes and accessories. At the end of the fourth quarter 2010, the Company operated 568 Talbots stores in 46 states, the District of Columbia, and Canada. Talbots brand on-line shopping site is located at www.talbots.com.
Cautionary Statement and Certain Risk Factors to Consider
This press release contains forward-looking information within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements may be identified by such forward-looking terminology as “expect,” “achieve,” “plan,” “look,” “projected,” “believe,” “anticipate,” “outlook,” “will,” “would,” “should,” “potential” or similar statements or variations of such terms. All of the information concerning our future liquidity, future financial performance and results, future credit facilities and availability, future cash flows and cash needs, strategic initiatives and other future financial performance or financial position, as well as our assumptions underlying such information, constitute forward-looking information. Our forward-looking statements are based on a series of expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections about the Company, are not guarantees of future results or performance, and involve substantial risks and uncertainty, including assumptions and projections concerning our internal plan, regular-price and markdown selling, operating cash flows, liquidity, and credit availability for all forward periods. Our business and our forward-looking statements involve substantial known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including the following risks and uncertainties:
- the continuing material impact of the U.S. economic environment on our business, continuing operations, liquidity, and financial results, including negative impact on consumer discretionary spending, substantial loss of household wealth and savings, significant tightening of the U.S. credit markets, and unemployment levels;
- the ability to successfully increase our store customer traffic and the success and customer acceptance of our merchandise offerings in our stores, on our website and in our catalogs;
- the risks associated with our efforts to successfully implement and achieve the benefits of our current strategic initiatives including store segmentation, store re-imaging, store rationalization, and any other future initiatives that we may undertake;
- the risks associated with the current increased promotional environment;
- the ability to accurately estimate and forecast future regular-price and markdown selling and other future financial results and financial position;
- the satisfaction of all borrowing conditions under our credit facility including accuracy of all representations and warranties, no events of default, absence of material adverse effect or change and all other borrowing conditions;
- the ability to access on satisfactory terms, or at all, adequate financing and sources of liquidity necessary to fund our continuing operations and strategic initiatives and to obtain further increases in our credit facilities as may be needed from time to time;
- the impact of the current regulatory environment and financial systems reforms on our business, including new consumer credit rules;
- the risks associated with our on-going efforts to adequately manage rising raw material and freight costs;
- the risks associated with our appointment of an exclusive global merchandise buying agent, including that the anticipated benefits and cost savings from this arrangement may not be realized or may take longer to realize than expected; and the risk that upon any cessation of the relationship, for any reason, we would be unable to successfully transition to an internal or other external sourcing function;
- the ability to continue to purchase merchandise on open account purchase terms at existing or future expected levels and with acceptable payment terms and the risk that suppliers could require earlier or immediate payment or other security due to any payment concerns;
- the risks and uncertainties in connection with any need to source merchandise from alternate vendors;
- any impact to or disruption in our supply of merchandise including from any current or any future increased political or other unrest or future labor shortages in various Asian countries which are our primary sources of merchandise supply or any other disruption in our ability to adequately obtain alternate merchandise supply as may be necessary;
- the ability to successfully execute, fund and achieve the expected benefits of supply chain initiatives;
- any significant interruption or disruption in the operation of our distribution facility or the domestic and international transportation infrastructure;
- the risk that estimated or anticipated costs, charges and liabilities to settle and complete the transition and exit from and disposal of the J. Jill business, including both retained obligations and contingent risk for assigned obligations, may materially differ from or be materially greater than anticipated;
- any future store closings and the success of and necessary funding for closing underperforming stores;
- the ability to reduce spending as needed;
- the ability to achieve our 2010 financial plan for operating results, working capital and cash flows;
- any negative publicity concerning the specialty retail business in general or our business in particular;
- the risk of impairment of goodwill and other intangible and long-lived assets; and
- the risks and uncertainties associated with the outcome of litigation, claims, tax audits, and tax and other proceedings and the risk that actual liabilities, assessments and financial impact will exceed any estimated, accrued or expected amounts or outcomes;
- the risk associated with our efforts in transforming our information technology systems to meet our changing business systems and operations.
All of our forward-looking statements are as of the date of this press release only. In each case, actual results may differ materially from such forward-looking information. We can give no assurance that such expectations or forward-looking statements will prove to be correct. An occurrence of or any material adverse change in one or more of the risk factors or risks and uncertainties referred to in this press release or included in our other periodic reports filed with the SEC could materially and adversely affect our continuing operations and our future financial results, cash flows, prospects and liquidity. Except as required by law, we do not undertake or plan to update or revise any such forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, changes in plans, assumptions, estimates or projections or other circumstances affecting such forward-looking statements occurring after the date of this release, even if such results, changes or circumstances make it clear that any forward-looking information will not be realized. Any public statements or disclosures by us following this release which modify or impact any of the forward-looking statements contained in this release will be deemed to modify or supersede such statements in this release.
In addition to the information set forth in this press release, you should carefully consider the risk factors and risks and uncertainties included in our 2009 Annual Report on Form 10-K and other periodic reports filed with the SEC.
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Julie Lorigan, 781-741-7775
Senior Vice President, Investor and Media Relations
Investor and Media Relations:
Leigh Parrish, Evan Goetz
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