Sephora will open mini shops inside 850 Kohl’s stores by 2023, as retailer bets big on beauty

  • Kohl’s hopes its Sephora partnership will help triple its sales in beauty in coming years.
  • Retailers are looking toward the beauty category to build loyalty with customers.
  • Target recently partnered with Ulta to open makeup shops in the discount retailer’s stores.



a large brick building with grass in front of a house: The Sephora shops will be about 2,500 square feet in size, offering the same services found at Sephora today and located at the front entrance of Kohl's.


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The Sephora shops will be about 2,500 square feet in size, offering the same services found at Sephora today and located at the front entrance of Kohl’s.

Sephora will open hundreds of beauty shops inside Kohl’s stores in coming years in a deal that rivals Target’s recent partnership with Ulta Beauty.

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Some 200 Sephora at Kohl’s locations will open by next fall, rising to at least 850 sites by 2023, the companies announced Tuesday. Sephora will also launch on Kohl’s website next year, offering more than 100 beauty brands, some of which are exclusive to Sephora.

The announcement of the 10-year partnership comes weeks after Target unveiled plans to open hundreds of Ulta makeup shops inside the discount retailer’s stores.

The beauty category has historically been dominated by America’s department store chains, but it is now increasingly moving out of malls, giving retailers that had been hardly invested in the category an opportunity to steal share.

“When we think about the beauty industry today, we’re very underrepresented,” Kohl’s CEO Michelle Gass said. “It’s a huge market [and] it’s expected to grow over the next few years.”

The Sephora shops on Kohl’s will be about 2,500 square feet, offering most of the same services found at other Sephora stores, including help with makeup application, and replacing Kohl’s current beauty assortment.

Kohl’s employees trained by Sephora will staff the locations, which will be positioned near the front of the store and occasionally accessible by a separate entrance, Gass said. The Sephora logo will join Kohl’s outside the stores.

“We’re going to be very loud about this,” Gass said. “There’s no question that [shoppers] will see Sephora from the exterior of the building.”

While the beauty industry has been hurt by fewer women dressing up for the office and other special events during the Covid pandemic, some bright spots point to stronger days ahead.

U.S. sales of prestige beauty products — those sold mainly in department stores — dropped 17% year over year to $3.7 billion during the third quarter, according to The NPD Group. That marked a softer decline than during the second quarter, buoyed by nail products and body products like soaps and exfoliators. Sales of fragrances were also up, according to the NPD data.



A rendering of a Sephora beauty shop opened inside of Kohl's. Two-hundred


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A rendering of a Sephora beauty shop opened inside of Kohl’s. Two-hundred

Ulta shares have gained nearly 9% this year, bringing its market value to $15.5 billion. Although sales in its stores declined, Ulta’s e-commerce revenue more than tripled in its fiscal second quarter ended Aug. 1, signaling strong demand for beauty products online.

LVMH, Sephora,’s parent does not breakout Sephora’s sales performance in its financial reports. At the end of fiscal 2019, though, the

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Stewart’s Shops to offer NYRA Bets gift cards

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The New York Racing Association has brought back its NYRA Bets gift cards for a limited time during the holidays. The cards, available in $50 denominations, were popular when first introduced last summer. But racing officials said they were also perfect Christmas stocking stuffers for recipients who are racing fans.

Each card features a unique PIN that, once entered at the racing fan’s NYRA Bets accounts, is immediately available for betting. Recipients who don’t currently have a NYRA Bets account can register for one for free. The cards can be purchased for cash at Stewart’s; credit cards aren’t accepted. And the cards don’t expire.

NYRA Bets accounts can be used to place bets at hundreds of racetracks worldwide, as well as at Aqueduct Race Track, Belmont Park, and Saratoga Race Course. The accounts can also be used for betting on the 2021 Triple Crown series.

“It’s a perfect stocking stuffer for any horse racing fan and just one of the many ways that Stewart’s makes your life easier,” said Gary Dake, Stewart’s Shops president. The cards, available at Stewart’s Shops in Saratoga County beginning Friday, will be on sale for a limited time only.

“We were thrilled beyond all expectations with the success of the NYRA Bets Gift Cards which we first introduced this summer in partnership with Stewart’s Shops,” said NYRA Bets President Tony Allevato. “We are excited to make these gift cards available as a limited time holiday offer for horse racing fans who may use them to bet this winter or during next year’s Saratoga meet. We thank our fans for their continued support and wish everyone a safe, healthy and happy holiday season.”

The NYRA Bets website made its debut in August 2016, replacing the NYRA Rewards platform that limited betting to New York state residents. Before that, out-of-state residents had to place online bets through third-party sites.

NYRA would prefer that fans use its platform, because each NYRA Bets wager is about three times as valuable to it as the ones made on other platforms.

The gift cards were popular last summer. When Stewart’s and NYRA teamed up, they expected to sell about 2,500 cards. By Labor Day, they had sold 12,000.

The pandemic, which kept horse racing fans from the historic Saratoga Race Course during last summer’s meet, may have helped boost online betting. With several Covid-19 vaccines and treatments showing promising results, NYRA officials no doubt hope Saratoga will once again be open to the public.

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Best bets from Amazon’s Electronics Gift Guide

The holiday season is fast approaching — and that means gift-giving (and hopefully receiving) is just around the corner. And like clockwork, Amazon has dropped a plethora of new gift guides with literally hundreds of top-rated and highly reviewed items.



a close up of electronics: Amazon Smart Plug


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Amazon Smart Plug



map: TCL 5-Series 50-Inch 4K UHD TV


© Amazon
TCL 5-Series 50-Inch 4K UHD TV

For electronics, it’s everything from a My Passport SSD (our top-pick for an external drive) to Animal Crossing for the Nintendo Switch — with TVs, phones and speakers in between. It’s a lot, to say the least. So we had our experts dig and scour the list for the best deals.

We’ve come up with our 14 favorite items from Amazon’s 2020 Electronics Gift Guide. And we’re breaking them down for you right here.

4th-Gen Echo Dot ($49.99; amazon.com)

The fourth-gen Echo Dot might mix up a working formula with a spherical design, but we think it’s still the budget smart speaker to beat. It’s pretty compact at about the size of a grapefruit, gives you instant access to everything Alexa can offer and provides good sound for its size.

Western Digital My Passport SSD ($159.99, originally $199.99; amazon.com)

We just named the My Passport SSD the best external drive you can get. It delivers speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps for read and write, which translates into zippy backups along with quick transfers. Furthermore, it’s a very compact build that comes in some nice shades, including a rosy gold. The starting 512GB size can store nearly 100,000 photos and can easily back up laptops with a 256GB internal drive.



calendar: Animal Crossing: New Horizons


© Amazon
Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Tile Mate ($24.99; amazon.com)

If you’re like us, there’s a chance you might misplace things every once in a while. And that’s where the Tile Mate comes in. It’s a small square piece of plastic with Bluetooth connectivity inside. You can attach it to your keys or a bag, or even hide it in pockets. Here’s the real kicker, though: Via the Tile app on your phone, you can ring the tracker to help you find the item.

TCL 5-Series 50-Inch 4K UHD TV ($399.99; amazon.com)

For 2020, TCL brought even more value to its more affordable 4K TVs. Take this 50-inch 5-Series from TCL — it’s a full 4K ultra-high definition (UHD) panel with support for HDR and Dolby Vision. This way, colors can pop, blacks will be dark and images will be sharp. The real icing on the cake, though, is that TCL is using a QLED, or quantum dot, panel for a better picture on the whole.

Amazon Smart Plug ($24.99; amazon.com)

If you’re just creating a smart home or are looking to expand your current setup, a smart plug is an excellent choice. Not only does it minimize any electrical work, but it adds function to outlets you have all over your house. Amazon’s Smart Plug is super easy to pair with an Echo and allows for control over that plug with your voice. You can

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Retailers from Target to Kohl’s make big bets in beauty as department stores reel

  • Mass retailers like Target and Kohl’s are investing more in beauty and hoping to grow their market share in makeup, nail products and perfumes.
  • Target announced a partnership with Ulta Beauty, while Kohl’s aims to at least triple its sales in the category and is planning to work with smaller, indie beauty brands.
  • The shift is happening as America’s department store makeup counters are losing their clout, opening a window of opportunity for other players to grow in the space.



a group of people walking in front of a building: Fans gather at local Ulta Beauty in Houston to greet Kylie Jenner at the launch of her cosmetics line on November 18, 2018 in Houston, Texas.


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Fans gather at local Ulta Beauty in Houston to greet Kylie Jenner at the launch of her cosmetics line on November 18, 2018 in Houston, Texas.

Some retailers are betting that lip glosses, eye shadow palettes and facial scrubs will be the next big thing to drive customers, especially younger ones, to their stores.

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As the likes of Ulta Beauty and LVMH-owned Sephora continue to open new locations across the United States, mass retailers like Target and Kohl’s are investing more in beauty and hoping to grow their market share in makeup, nail products and perfumes.

With this, a category that has historically been dominated by America’s department store chains is now increasingly moving out of malls. And while the coronavirus pandemic has driven an overall decline in beauty sales this year, sales of makeup and other personal care items have been surging online, which could prove to permanently shake-up the beauty landscape even further. With department store makeup counters losing clout, beauty could bring big business to companies that were not investing as much in the space before.

“How customers want to experience beauty is shifting,” said Alexandra Wilkis Wilson, former co-founder of Glamsquad, and current co-founder and managing partner at the investment firm Clerisy.

“The idea of a sales associate spraying perfume on cards and handing them out, and then offering to do a makeover, seems unhygienic or even dangerous to a consumer right now,” she said. “And even after there is a [Covid-19] vaccine distributed, my sense is the consumer’s view of hygiene and shopping for beauty is going to change.”

This hesitancy from consumers is clearly there: 41% of people said they felt either “unsafe” or “very unsafe” testing beauty products in stores during the pandemic, according to a survey of 1,097 consumers on Nov. 11 by the retail analytics firm First Insight. Twenty-two percent said they plan to actually buy more beauty products this holiday season compared with last, while 35% said they’re planning to buy less.

But post-pandemic, analysts expect a strong rebound as people look forward to getting dressed up again, which is part of the reason for all the renewed interest in the space.

“Everyone is all-in for getting back to special occasions,” said Telsey Advisory Group CEO Dana Telsey. “People have missed birthdays, graduations, anniversaries … there’s going to be demand for makeup.”

‘Mass exodus’ out of department stores

Department stores were already losing customers prior to the pandemic, which accelerated that trend. Now, there

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