cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
An item in the news today concerns Land’s End, owned by Sears Holdings for several years, likely being spun off back into a free-standing, self-driving entity.
I was a solid Land’s End customer for years and was mortified when I learned that the company had been sold to the Sears Holding group. That was the organization that also owned K-Mart and had been seemingly struggling to find a way to be sufficiently profitable.
My years as a Land’s End customer had pretty well come to an end whenever I walked into a Sears store and saw the Land’s End section. It was just too high in quality to fit in that setting so far as I was concerned. I am still enjoying my Land’s End purchases made years ago, by the way!
It seems that I probably was not alone with my feelings about this deal. Sales for Land’s End didn’t take off. They were lackluster. I ascribed that to their ownership and the overall reputation of that group being enough to sully the reputation of Land’s End.
As that group continues to try to find ways to improve its profitability, it has now struck on the idea of the spin-off of Land’s End separating it from the Sears and K-Mart brands even as some or all of the ownership may continue to stay vested in that group.
The folks in Dodgeville, WI have to be elated with this news and excited once again for the future of this great organization that simply speaks of quality coupled with solid value. This is a deal that should’ve never happened but did. The man who started Land’s End was able to cash out and there is nothing wrong with that. Gary Comers walked away with, as I recall, something in the $2.3 Billion range. He deserved that.
I doubt that the spin-off will carry that kind of a price tag, but it may very well get back on the grow again once it is visibly separated from the Sears and K-Mart names.
This is mindful of the possibility of Allen Edmonds becoming owned by Men’s Warehouse. The two simply do not belong together. I’ll still wear my Allen Edmonds shoes, but I’ll not be happy if that brand gets restricted to fit into a Men’s Warehouse price point setting. That is as wrong as was the attempted marriage of Land’s End and Sears/K-Mart.