To Brand or Not To Brand

Nancy J. Rabolt , Judy K. Miler

Business Case
Source: Bloomsbury Fashion Business Cases
DOI: 10.5040/9781474208789.017
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A privately-owned traditional downtown department store that has a loyal local following has been in existence for over 125 years. The store continues to do well and is profitable, but the owners want to look at one of their largest volume departments, men’s accessories, from a merchandising perspective to see if changes may be warranted to increase sales. A new buyer has been hired to manage this high-volume department that continuously grows in sales. His boss, the divisional merchandise manager, has told him that he will soon be asking him to make some important merchandising decisions to help improve the department’s operation and realize a growth in sales. In preparation, the buyer begins to carefully study and analyze the men’s accessories department inventory. The buyer notices that the inventory is imbalanced and weak, with almost all of the stock being known name brands, as it has been for years. He also learns that the stores’ competition has had success in carrying new accessory styles from private-label resources that his department does not carry, and he feels that they are important key pieces that they could carry with their own signature private label. The buyer realizes that he must have his facts, data, and justification to support his proposition to make changes in the merchandise mix/assortment of his department that should result in increased sales.

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