retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Dallas Morning News reports that The Container Store - having just posted online sales that were up 72.2 percent in Q4 and up 109.5 percent for the year, and total sales up more than 8 percent for the year to $990.1 million - "has some new ideas for how the retailer can take a bigger share of the $20 billion storage and organization market."

CEO Satish Malhotra tells the News that "the company plans to open a smaller store concept next year," and perhaps most intriguingly, is considering a store-within-a-store concept that would put curated Container Store boutiques inside another "quality retailer."  The News notes that Malhotra knows something about how to do this - he joined the retailer from Sephora, which also has been using that strategy.

The story also says that "stores will be focusing more on demonstrations and will use their expert organizers to beef up the level of service. Before-and-after real-life pictures and testimonials will be used to make better connections with customers, he said. The company’s loyalty program just surpassed 10 million members."

KC'S View:

I've always thought that The Container Store has such an interesting niche, not to mention a fascinating culture - they've been really careful about not over-saturating the market with stores.  The notion that it can grow through different formats, plus e-commerce, will present it with new challenges and demand new disciplines.  But the embracing the future requires taking chances.