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Retailers Turn to In-House Brands to Woo Price-Conscious Consumers

Amid the chorus of department-store chains blaming the warmer-than-usual winter for their weak fourth-quarter sales was one standout hook: a renewed focus on private brands.

J.C. Penney, which shed most of its own brands in favor of national names during Ron Johnson’s short stint as CEO a few years back, announced its intent to leverage its private-label infrastructure going forward, like St. John’s Bay, Ambrielle and the Millennial-focused Belle + Sky.

“The most aggressive pricing environment in retail exists online because of the dynamic price scraping,” Marvin Ellison, chief executive officer, said on a conference call with analysts in February. “We believe that [private brands] give us a tremendous advantage going up against pure-play e-commerce because we are going to be exclusive sellers of certain brands online.”

Read more at Sourcing Journal.