Anti-signal: Bed, Bath & Beyond Saving?
The Signal: The home goods retailer Bed, Bath & Beyond (BBBY) saw its stock price decline by more than 20% one day last week.
The sharp dip followed the company’s release of a sales warning, which highlighted that same-store sales in December and January declined by 5.4% YoY due to aggressive promotions, declining foot traffic, and inventory management issues.
The timing of the info release was curious as the company’s next earnings report is not until April. The move may have been a play by Bed Bath’s new CEO Mark Tritton (former chief merchandising officer at Target) to control the narrative.
After Tritton took over in November, many people predicted a turnaround. But the latest news suggests that things may get worse before they get better.
The Opportunity: According to research by Coresight Research, there more than 1.2k retail store have already closured this year (annualized = 14k+), compared to 9.2k in 2019. Home goods retailers are taking a brunt of the hit: In addition to 60 expected Bed Bath closures, Pier 1 Imports will shut down 450 locations as part of its recent bankruptcy filing.
A round-up of Bed Bath’s top-selling items — Wamsutta bed sheets, Dyson hair dryer, Ninja blender, simplehuman trash can, Madison Park curtains, Keurig coffee maker, Instant Pot — suggests that Bed Bath’s offering is simply too general (and easily found online from competing retailers).
Our first Trends report of 2020 looked at how retail could survive and thrive in the new decade by analyzing the corporate strategy for America’s largest mall operator, Simon Property Group.
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