Private Brand Drives Record Q4 At Michaels Stores

    Irving, Texas, based arts and craft retailer Michaels Stores, Inc. today reported impressive unaudited financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended January 28, 2012. With total sales for the quarter $1.404 billion, a 5.5% increase from fiscal 2010 fourth quarter sales of $1.331 billion. And more interestingly for readers was the specific call out of Private Label and its impressive penetration.

    “Both our fourth quarter and fiscal year operating results were records and exceeded expectations due to stronger sales and improved margin,” said John Menzer, Chief Executive Officer. “We believe the improved focus on our customer, both in-store and with our multi-channel digital marketing efforts, is resonating well with them. We are pleased with the increased penetration of our private label products which has now reached 50% of Michaels stores non-custom sales.”

    Michaels is proof that when retailers build a compelling, relevant and targeted brand proposition and reinforces it with truly differentiated Private Brands profit and customer loyalty will follow.

    Michaels Stores, Inc. is North America’s largest specialty retailer of arts, crafts, framing, floral, wall decor and seasonal merchandise for the hobbyist and do-it-yourself home decorator. As of March 14, 2012, the Company owns and operates 1,066 Michaels stores in 49 states and Canada, and 130 Aaron Brothers stores.

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    Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.