One of the biggest business stories that broke during our summer hiatus was the throwing of George (I’m not the guy with the gun in Florida!) Zimmer under the Men’s Wearhouse bus by the company’s board. Who then proceeded to stop, back up, and run over George three more times.
Long-time Lairig Marketing readers will recall that we tipped you off to the genesis of Men’s Wearhouse management troubles way back in June of 2010 with this post about a new CMO and a disastrous new ad campaign. The ad was pulled ASAP, and the CMO was eventually let go.
But everyone on the board, other than Sir George, couldn’t “let go” of the obsession with Millenials. A curious target, given how unemployed, broke, and hipster-clothed they are. It must have made for a Curious George, too. He stood alone, knowing his brand could never stretch that far.
But the Men’s Wearhouse board decided to go all in on Millenials. So?
So, the Men’s Wearhouse just reported a bleak outlook for the rest of its fiscal year, blaming – as most poor managers do – the economy, calendar “timing shifts,” even the “13” in 2013, a la “…the 13 in 2013 is causing a small but meaningful number of brides to avoid getting married this year.”
Oh, and we can’t resist: “[one-time charges included] some separation and legal costs associated with a former executive.” Wonder who dat be?
And how’s this for a macroeconomic view: “we've been through these kinds of turbulent times before…” What "turbulence"? The U.S. economy is as flat as a pancake thrown under a bus.
The other thing as flat as a pancake is the comp-store sales trend in the core Men’s Wearhouse business. Falling to a mere increase of 0.7% for Q2, management estimates that comps have started a decline in the “low single digits” already for the newest fiscal quarter.
“…recent sales trends in both Canada and the U.S. have led us to be less optimistic about the remainder of the year. We see that many other retailers, both large and small, are also predicting a difficult second half.” So, in essence, “f&ck it, we will too.”
Instead, we wish everyone involved would just cut to the chase. Rebrand the core retail stores with the name of the newly acquired and soon to be vertically integrated Joseph Abboud. Come up with a new name for the tuxedo and corporate apparel operations. And sell the Men’s Wearhouse name back to George Zimmer.