Columns

Great Expectations

Duke_Ratliff

Pity the home furnishings industry exec on a long summer vacation—he or she will return to work with a whole new landscape of retail leaders. For those keeping score at home (along with the imaginary, anachronistic exec who could actually take vacation all summer), here’s a brief rundown on the recent CEO shuffle: Target namedMore »

Restoration Hardware: In the Black

Duke_Ratliff

Gary Friedman, Restoration Hardware’s CEO, owes me $5. Upon returning from my vacation, I found a massive, black block wrapped in plastic on my dining room table. My dogsitter had left it there with the rest of the mail. After quite a bit of effort to rip apart the wrapping, I discovered the approximately 12More »

Risk Management 101: Other Contractual Protections (Part 2)

Kristi A. Davidson

As promised, this month we conclude our Risk Management 101 series discussing some remaining “boilerplate” terms: limitations periods; dispute resolution (including choice of law and choice of form); and notice provisions. •Limitations Periods. The law imposes time parameters for the commencement of certain types of claims. Contracting parties, however, may choose to shorten or lengthenMore »

IHA Shoots For the Stars

Duke_Ratliff

Did anyone watch the Cosmos television show? The recently concluded Fox series, an updated version of the old Carl Sagan program, took viewers on trips to new, unexplored  worlds. The International Housewares Association last month unveiled a plan to boldly go where no home furnishings trade association has gone before—to the world of consumers. BestMore »

Pondering Millennials

Duke_Ratliff

By Duke Ratliff Call them a marketer’s dream—or nightmare—the consumer segment dubbed “millennials” (consumers aged 18-34) is starting to make its presence felt in the home furnishings industry. Attention-getting products targeting millennials have been seen at every trade show this year. These items are usually inventive, colorful or unusual in some way—perfectly reflecting the quirky,More »

Risk Management 101: Protecting Intellectual Property Through Indemnification and Insurance

Kristi A. Davidson

By Kristi A. Davidson In January, we began our discussion about how to protect your intellectual property and ways to mitigate the risk of unauthorized use.  Toward the end of that column, I wrote these three words:  “indemnification and insurance.”  We have certainly addressed these words in prior installments of Risk Management 101.  But didMore »

Mitigating Risks in Reductions-In-Force

Brian Rauch

By Brian S. Rauch Reductions-in-force have, unfortunately, become a growing trend in the retail sector. As detailed in last month’s issue of HFN, both Macy’s and J.C. Penney recently announced the elimination of 2,000 or more jobs. Even though they are typically done to improve profitability, reductions-in-force can be costly in terms of declines inMore »

Jerry’s Kids

Duke_Ratliff

I loved the old Jerry Lewis movies when I was a child (not so much as an adult). Mostly forgotten, one of the films featured Lewis slapsticking and mugging his way through his duties as an employee at the fictional Tuttle Department Store. The movie was called “Who’s Minding the Store?”, a phrase that hasMore »