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Kohl's revving for RV rollout

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. — Come next spring when it launches its Royal Velvet program for bath, Kohl's Corporation envisions opportunities to possibly expand the brand to other home categories, the company said during its third quarter earnings call late yesterday.

"Royal Velvet will initially sell in bath, but we feel it has the potential to expand elsewhere in home," said Kevin Mansell, president.

And in time for the springtime introduction of Royal Velvet, the store will have added improvements, Mansell said, "both on a fixture basis and a visual basis. There is more coming." Details will be released at the end of the first quarter.

Royal Velvet represents one major initiative that is hoped to give the home category a boost, considering its lackluster performance lately. During the third quarter, Mansell said home was not as strong in sales as women's. "We probably didn't have as many new initiatives (in home) as we did in women's."

He added that, overall, the gifts and housewares businesses have been "good" but decorative accessories and textiles were "a little weaker" during the period.

Kohl's turned in a robust performance for the third quarter ended Oct. 30, with net income up 19 percent to $143.8 million, or 42 cents per share. Sales rose 15 percent to $2.74 billion. Comps were up 1.2 percent.

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