Excell out to draw a new bath
Retail Editor 2 -- Home Textiles Today, September 16, 2013
New York - The typical bathroom that Americans use every day has changed in many ways. But the products the bath industry sells for that room - not so much.
The Excell bath division of Excell Glenoit Croscill is out to throw some cold water on that idea this market with a major relaunch of its bath accessories line that will feature fresh approaches to both fashion and function.
"We did a big research project with NPD and what we concluded is that the consumer is just bored with this category," said Joe Granger, president of the company, as workers hurried to finish up the new showroom presentation for market week. "We found that there was 5% increase in unit sales but a 27% decrease in average unit sales. That's bad."
Excell's new approach is not about higher prices; in fact, price is not a factor, Granger said. Instead, the company is trying to increase the frequency of consumer purchases of bath products through fashion and improved functionality since it is relatively inexpensive room to completely redo compared to bedrooms or living rooms.
To that end, Excell will introduce a line that features fashion colors, shapes and materials, but also improved technology. A new collection of shower curtain hooks will allow consumers to attach curtains to rods "in under 20 seconds," he said.
A new shower curtain liner made of fabric is both water-repellent and anti-microbial, another first for Excell, he said.
Some of the other introductions are still under wraps, but Granger promised there would be plenty to see, including the company's first solid-color towel program, a light-weight, quick-dry product aimed at the $9.99 price point.
The line is being targeted to the traditional Excell customer base of big box retailers. Granger said if one store made the commitment to the program, it would get exclusively.
Granger, who joined the company last year, said he focused on the Croscill bedding side of the house initially "but this is the first time we're working on the Excell-Glenoit side of the business.
"We're really trying to change the behavior of the consumer when it comes to bath products to benefit the overall business."
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