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Big Lots likes the look of home biz

New York — Big Lots will add to its stable of national brands in home textiles with a "high-end name" joining its assortment in July.

The home area, consisting of domestics, furniture and home decor, totals 25 percent of its merchandise, and is a "very meaningful business," Jeff Naylor, svp and cfo, said at the U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray consumer conference here this week.

Domestics, which along with home decor, accounts for about 13 percent to 14 percent of merchandise, provides a great opportunity. "There's a great supply of sheets, towels, comforters and such — and we've tapped into that," he said.

The addition of furniture has been so successful that Big Lots will continue to grow this business at the expense of apparel, and newer stores are slightly bigger than the 27,000-square-foot average to accommodate the business. It's getting out of hanging apparel, he said, in part because competitors such as TJX and Ross Stores do a "better job."

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