Container Store's Holiday Product Sales Tanked, But on Another Note, ‘We Love Marie Kondo,' Said CEO

Wrapping paper and package trimmings have been a mainstay for Container Store shoppers for decades, but the category is losing its customers.The Coppell-based chain of organization stores said Tuesday its holiday departments, which includes post-holiday storage and in recent years stocking stuffers, declined 15.8 percent in the quarter ended in December. It's the second year in a row that the holiday merchandise disappointed, said CEO Melissa Reiff on a conference call with analysts to review results that were released after the market closed. The company is planning to de-emphasize holiday next year, she said.The retailer's good news was that custom closets, which has been Reiff's "goal of domination," was strong in the company's holiday quarter, climbing 4.5 percent in the period that ended in Dec. 29.In January, custom closet sales were up 9.4 percent. The company usually doesn't report current quarter partial sales, but did so because of the strong turnaround, said CFO Jodi Taylor.The Dallas flagship store on Northwest Highway, which was remodeled last year with a large area devoted to custom closets, has presented the company with valuable research, Reiff said. This summer it plans to expand the large custom closets department to two more stores and offer more new space solutions.The Container Store's marketing campaign, adopted last year, is "where space comes from," and Reiff said during the call that the new Marie Kondo show, Tidying Up on Netflix, has "certainly inspired" customers.  Continue reading...

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