Free Essay

The Children's Place

In: Business and Management

Submitted By carrosen
Words 1754
Pages 8
The Children’s Place is a leading specialty retailer of children’s merchandise. They sell clothing and accessories for newborns to 10 year olds. The company is not just a retail store, they also design, contract to manufacture high quality merchandise under the brand name “The Children’s Place.” The first Children's Place store was opened by two 1965 graduates of Harvard Business School, David Pulver and Clinton Clark.[1] The Children’s Place is a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ exchange since 1997 and the headquarters are located in Secaucus, New Jersey. They currently employ about 5,000 full time employees. This company is a vertical retailer and their website is WWW.ChildrensPlace.com. According to GlobeNewsWire.com, The Children’s Place is the largest pure-play children's specialty apparel retailer in North America.” [2] This company owns many brands and licenses but the three main brands they own or have owned are their own brand of “The Children’s Place” clothing and accessories, Disney Stores through Hoop Holdings, and licensed graphic t-shirts. The first company brand is their self named brand, “The Children’s Place.” This is their most well known brand because it is what they sell in their stores. They have lines ranging from newborns to 10 year olds. They sell everything from clothing to accessories including shoes. They have design teams who design seasonal clothing for each age group. They have lines for both girls and boys. Their logo on their website for this clothing line is, “Big Fashion, Little Prices.”[3] This line competes with many different stores including Gap Kids, Gymboree, Osh Kosh B’Gosh and Kids R’Us. One of the reasons The Children’s Place has been able to do so well amongst these competitors because they have lower prices in comparison to these other stores. There is also a pleasant atmosphere for both the parents and children to shop in their stores. The company owns and operates about 995 stores and also sells clothing online at their online retail store listed above. The company feels that they have great prices that are not priced to high above what the cost is. According to WWW.FundingUniverse.com, The past chairman and CEO, Ezra Dabah, had a major hand in picking what is put in the stores and what the prices would be. “'Most companies go to the factories and say, `I want a pair of jeans for $5.' Ezra negotiates every single element. He goes in and says, `I'll pay this price for the zipper and use this kind of stitch.' In the end, he comes out with good quality at a great price.'”[4] This has been very helpful in keeping this clothing line as a front runner in the niche of children’s clothing. Crain's New York Business (May 3, 1999) claimed 'There's not another concept out there like them. ... The clothes offer great value, and they're fashionable.' Another industry expert quoted in Business Week (May 29, 2000). The second brand they owned was Disney Stores from 2004 - 2007. They owned and operated the Disney Stores through a subsidiary Hoop Holdings/Hoop Retail Stores LLC.[5] Fiscal 2005 marked the first full year The Children's Place had managed the Disney Store. As of June 2007, the company owned and operated 872 “The Children's Place” stores and previously 328 Disney Stores before The Walt Disney Company moved to take the rights for their stores back. On March 26, 2008, Hoop Holdings/Hoop Retail Stores LLC and similarly related subsidiaries of The Children’s Place that operated Disney Store retail locations filed a voluntarily petition for relief under Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. The Children's Place stores were not affected in any way by the bankruptcy filing for Hoop Retail. The Walt Disney Company took back the rights for this line and their clothing stores. The Children’s Place went back to just selling their own brands. The third and final brand or license that the Children’s Place owns was more difficult to find. I recently interviewed with The Children’s Place and was able to ask all six of the women who interviewed me some questions about the company. According to Rachel Penn, the Associate Merchandise Manager for E-commerce of Accessories and Shoes, “The Children’s Place only owns their own brand but they do have licenses for some of their graphic t-shirts for both boys and girls.” On some of the t-shirts there are objects or people that need to be licensed such as Batman. The Children’s Place deals with the licenses directly with whichever company such as Disney, Nickelodeon or Cartoon Network. They use characters from the television shows on their graphic t-shirts and must get licenses for them. This is a big part of their company mostly for older boys. The Children’s Place’s main form of marketing is web-based. They have pages on Twitter and Facebook where they tell their followers about upcoming specials and deals. They also inform their followers of new merchandise that is available. Another form of advertising and marketing that is used by The Children’s Place is emailing coupons to email addresses of people who have bought clothing from them. According to a case study done by Arial Software called, “The Children's Place gains from in-house email marketing,”[6] The Children's Place sends outbound email campaigns to its customers featuring store information and product promotions for both its retail locations and its online store. These advertising techniques have been very successful for the company. In October 2011, a new head of the sourcing department was hired. According to an article from RetailingToday.com, “The Children's Place Retail Stores has announced the appointment of Peter Warner as SVP global sourcing. Previously, he served in similar capacities with Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, Foot Locker and Nike.” [7] Manufacturing is sourced globally, and The Children's Place works closely with manufacturers of fabrics and other primary products as well as with manufacturers of final products. In the past five years, the company has been sourcing aggressively in sub-Saharan Africa, taking advantage of the duty-free status for textiles and trim permitted by the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). According to Apparel.Edgl.com, “Expanding sourcing to Africa also created new challenges: Because Africa is a "long way from everywhere" and its transportation and communication infrastructures are not yet well developed, more lead time is required to move materials in and finished product out.” [8] One more important topic about The Children’s Place is their product development. According to Apparel.Edgl.com, “ Last year the Children's Place migrated to new fabric design software, Lectra's Kaledo suite.” We were fortunate enough to work with Kaledo style in this class so I am familiar with the program. The use of this program had helped the company tremendously. They feel that the designers for The Children’s Place have grown a lot since they started using this program. I recently had an interview with The Children’s Place for a Distribution Analyst position on Thursday April 13th. This position is an entry level job that is very hands on and analytical. It is in the department of planning and allocation. This position calls for 0-2 years of related work experience and a 4 year degree. They also ask for solid written and verbal communication skills along with strong math skills. Some of the things the person with this position would be doing are reviewing product performance at style and region/district/store level, develop insights and recommendations relative to inventory performance at store/category/style level, and create and process size scales with initial allocation for stores. According to the job description, “Analyses ensure that all new fashion flows are flawlessly executed to provide a “best in class” experience for our customer.” I met with multiple people in that division and I was there for about two hours. I truly felt that I would be a good fit at this company and believe that knowing so much about their background and history will be very beneficial during the interview. I feel that the interview went well and I hope to hear from them soon. Another piece of information that I learned from this interview is that The Children’s Place will be opening stores in Saudi Arabia. They are opening in Saudi Arabia because there are not a lot of stores with a similar target market there. The Children’s Place is one of the Top 50 Apparel Businesses for 2011 according to Apparel Magazine.[9] This company is well run which is why it holds its own against major competitors. They offer well made clothing for children while still being an affordable price. Customers are kept informed of their specials, new merchandise and coupons. Overall, The Children’s Place deserves it’s number 30 spot in the Top 50.

Bibliography
"Apparel Magazine." For The Children's Place, Complexity Is Child's Play. 7 Oct. 2009. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
"Children's Place Names Head of Global Sourcing | RetailingToday.com." RetailingToday.com. 3 Oct. 2011. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
"The Children's Place Gains from In-house Email Marketing Using Campaign Enterprise." Mass Email Marketing Software for Email Newsletters, Autoresponder, Email Merge and Bulk Email, from Arial Software. Web. 4 Apr. 2012. .
"The Children's Place." The Children's Place. Web. 4 Apr. 2012. .
"The Children's Place Appoints Peter Warner SVP of Global Sourcing (Nasdaq:PLCE)." GlobeNewswire. 30 Sept. 2011. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
"The Children's Place Retail Stores, Inc." -- Company History. Web. 5 Apr. 2012. .
"Press Release." The Children's Place - Investor Relations. 2007. Web. 5 Apr. 2012. .
"The Top 50." Apparel Magazine, July 2011. Web. 4 Apr. 2012.
-----------------------
[1] "The Children's Place Retail Stores, Inc." -- Company History. Web. 5 Apr. 2012. .
[2] "The Children's Place Appoints Peter Warner SVP of Global Sourcing (Nasdaq:PLCE)." GlobeNewswire. 30 Sept. 2011. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
[3] "The Children's Place." The Children's Place. Web. 4 Apr. 2012. .
[4] "The Children's Place Retail Stores, Inc." -- Company History. Web. 5 Apr. 2012. .
[5] "Press Release." The Children's Place - Investor Relations. 2007. Web. 5 Apr. 2012. .
[6] "The Children's Place Gains from In-house Email Marketing Using Campaign Enterprise." Mass Email Marketing Software for Email Newsletters, Autoresponder, Email Merge and Bulk Email, from Arial Software. Web. 4 Apr. 2012. .
[7] "Children's Place Names Head of Global Sourcing | RetailingToday.com." RetailingToday.com. 3 Oct. 2011. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
[8] "Apparel Magazine." For The Children's Place, Complexity Is Child's Play. 7 Oct. 2009. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. .
[9] "The Top 50." Apparel Magazine, July 2011. Web. 4 Apr. 2012.

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