Gottschalks plans on branding home

FRESNO , Calif. — Gottschalks Inc. this year will place emphasis on building its home division with new brands, including a bigger push for private label goods, the company said during its fourth quarter conference call last week.

"We believe there is a significant opportunity for improved results in our home store this year," said Jim Famalette, president and CEO. "We appointed a new (general merchandise manager) for the home store and there are several merchandising strategies we are already putting in place that we're very excited about. We believe the home division could be a major catalyst in driving store traffic in 2005."

Famalette was referring to Donald Engelman, who joined the company in October as its home division's new vice president, general merchandise manger, overseeing housewares, tabletop, textiles and furniture.

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