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Macy's West to pursue home sales with Liberty

Carole Sloan -- Home Textiles Today, December 10, 2001

San Francisco — Liberty House offers Macy's West "so much opportunity, especially in home."

The 11-unit Hawaii-based department store chain already has shown strong returns as the result of some early changes in product offering and inventory, said Bob Mettler, president of the 137-unit Macy's West.

Federated Department Stores acquired the Liberty House department stores and its four specialty stores earlier this year, and the chain is being run by Macy's West.

"The idea I like in home is that it is a local business, not dependent on tourist business," Mettler said.

Home textiles will be one of the biggest opportunities, and already a renewed Royal Velvet towel program has produced substantial increases. "Our biggest increases to date have been in areas like quilts, domestics and tabletop, which are underdeveloped" in the Ala Moana store that has been remerchandised. The other Liberty House units will be remerchandised by spring, Mettler said.

In the mainland Macy's West stores, "the luxury part of home textiles has been strong," as have cold-weather items and table linens, Mettler said. Quilts also have been "outstanding" as well as throws. Overall in home, Mettler said, "merchandise that has a decoratory, homey, luxury feel to it has been strong." These include the home textiles items as well as barware, stemware and cookware, he added.

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