Welcome back to The Spin! Today, a court will likely decide on the future of embattled Sears Holdings Corporation. Charlotte Russe is the next US retailer to consider a sale or bankruptcy, as London's Selfridges emerges to be of the few shining lights in the market. Over in China, yet another Western luxury brand managed to stir controversy with a new ad. Enjoy the read and feel free to share! Best, Ulrike


Pass the sugar, Ed! Unless chairman Edward Lampert sweetens his bid for the bankrupt Sears Holdings Corporation by Tuesday morning, the embattled retailer is likely to liquidate. According to press reports, Sears considers the $4.4 billion offer (which includes $1.8 billion in debt-forgiveness) by Lampert’s ESL Investment company short. Today, a court hearing is scheduled to update the judge.

And another one... US mall-based teen retailer Charlotte Russe is considering (paywall) a sale or bankruptcy. Last February, a new deal with lenders allowed the San Diego-based company, which was bought (press release) by private equity group Advent International in 2009, to reduce its debt from $214 million to $90 million. Although interest payments we are slashed in half, the planned turnaround did not materialize.

Rocking Christmas. Thanks to a broad range of exclusive products, British department store Selfridges recorded a 10 percent sales increase at its Oxford Street flagship during the 24 days leading up to Christmas. Company-wide revenues increased 8 percent during the time period. A high footfall made Selfridges a lone star on high-street, as the anticipated Christmas shopping spree did not happen for most UK retailers.


Amazon augments. Following the lead of Ikea, Macy’s and Houzz, US online giant Amazon has created a tool that lets online furniture shoppers create virtual rooms. Called Amazon Showroom the technology allows users to swap out pieces and change wall and/or floor colors on screen as they shop.

Hasta la vista, Social Club. With a user base of over 4.1 billion, messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat and Viber have already surpassed traditional social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn with their combined audience of 3.4 billion. This shift requires (paywall) advertisers to engage in real time and shift their approach to conversational, sharable content.


Masters of time. To strengthen its position in luxury watch making, privately owned French fashion house Chanel has acquired a 20 percent minority stake in Swiss parts maker Kenissi over the past year. The investment was first made public last June as part of Chanel's first earnings release in its 109-year history. The company also owns a stake in Swiss-based F.P. Journe, and other parts makers.

Health warning. Mounting losses at Temperley London are putting the future of the British fashion label at risk. Although the fashion favorite of the Duchess of Cambringe recently raised £1.8m to fund a turnaround, auditors warn that operating losses and liabilities of £1.4m cast significant doubt on the company’s ability to continue as a going concern.


Not happy together. Burberry’s very first Chinese New Year ad is being both mocked and cheered on social media, with critics calling it creepy. One "portrait of togetherness" features (press release) a gathering of the cross generations of family for a seasonal celebration. In stark contrast to traditional Chinese fashion imagery for the New Year, eight Burberry-clad characters including Chinese actresses Zhao Wei and Zhou Dongyu pose sternly in the image some users liken to a scene of the Adam’s Family or a horror movie.


is a product
delivered to you by | Imprint