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  1. #1
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    Default Childrens Place and Disney Make New Disney Store Arrangements

    Childrens Place and Disney Settle Dispute


    Reuters
    June 9, 2007

    NEW YORK - Children's Place Retail Stores Inc. said on Friday that it settled a dispute with a Walt Disney Co.unit regarding its license to operate the Disney Store retail chain in North America.

    As part of the deal, Children's Place said it is developing a new prototype for the Disney stores and will obtain Disney's approval of the prototype this month.

    The retailer said it will remodel 234 existing stores into the new store prototype by Jan. 31, 2012. It will also open at least 18 new Disney stores using the new store prototype by early 2009.

    In addition, Children's Place will complete a "maintenance refresh" program in about 165 Disney stores, including the flagship store on Michigan Avenue in Chicago, no later than June 30, 2008.

    In the dispute, Disney had alleged that Children's Place committed 120 "uncured material breaches" of its license agreement to operate the stores, meaning Disney could have terminated the agreement. The alleged breaches mainly related to store remodeling and maintenance.

    Children's Place said its board has approved spending $175 million between now and Jan. 31, 2012 for the store maintenance and renovation program.

    The companies also agreed to reduce the restrictions on Disney to grant direct merchandising licenses to other specialty retail store chains.

    Children's Place did not return phone calls seeking comment.


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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Figment! View Post
    The companies also agreed to reduce the restrictions on Disney to grant direct merchandising licenses to other specialty retail store chains.
    This is one of the things that killed the Disney Stores to begin with. Once you could get Disney shirts at WalMart, there wasn't much of a need for TDS. The collectibles, etc were all that was left, then those disappeared. Heck, even the movies are $10 cheaper at WalMart than TDS.

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    This all seems very odd to me. I just wish they'd hurry up and open the one out here in Oshawa so i can transfer out of Toronto.
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    Glen, Are they looking at opening one in the 'Shwa?!!!! That would be awesome!!! I never get to Scarborough/Yorkdale. I wish they would open a Children's Place out here too.

    I think there has been a decline in products offered at TDS, but there is still some good stuff. I like getting the kids tee shirts when they are on sale.
    Lea-Ann
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    there's one due at Concord Mills here in NC!!!!

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    ive loved the Disney Store since i was a little girl.
    me and two of my friends were in there the other day and had a blast!
    why change it!?

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    Default Let it die...

    I worked for The Disney Store under both the Disney Co. and Children's Place. And while at first it seemed like the only way to save the chain by selling to TCP, I have come to realize that it should have just been left to die. The chain isn't what it used to be, and beyond that it isn't what it even should be, and no one other than the Disney Co. can do anything "Disney" with it. I have zero confidence in TCP to do anything but make it a disneyfied version of their original stores. And to be honest, other than the toys and few shreds of adult fare, thats exactly what they are. I sincerely hope that they just plain go away, and maybe someday with the Disney Co. doing well again with new management at the helm now, we will again see a Disney run chain that will harken back to what the Disney Stores were like when they first hit the scene. I just am glad that I had enough sense to leave the company on my own terms so I wouldn't have to be witness to what is happening now first hand.
    "Let your conscience be your guide..."

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    I never understood how a company would think they can run a Disney store better (and cheaper) than the Disney company. Having to license everything it sells and still have to pay the same (or similar) administrative expenses just doesn't make sense.

    The Disney Stores had higher "attendence" than the parks overall. For many, The Disney Store would be the only contact with something Disney that people could get. The theming of the stores, the Cast Members (yes many were true cast members that just didn't live close to a park to help spread the magic), the entire show was part of the experience.

    Unfortunately some bad management decisions (at least in my opinion) were made that slowly eroded the experience. They turned into a glorified toy store and the Disney experience that people were looking for started to disappear.

    The selling of the stores was enough to push out many of the cast members. My local store lost 8 of the 10 or 11 people who had been there almost from the opening of the store, the newest person was there close to three years. The staff was an important part of the store experience, I don't think The Children's Place understood that. Maybe they did, but I don't think so.

    I wouldn't be sad to see the stores die. I haven't been to one in a number of years now. I'm not even curious...

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    Cool

    I don't know if those wishing for the death of the store have kids or not, but I'll tell you I hope mine never closes. A trip to our mall would not be complete for DD without a stop in TDS.

    Personally, I think a large portion of their merchandise is greatly improved over just a few years ago. Yes, the toys are still junk and there's still too much plush and not enough unique stuff, but the clothing lines are vastly improved over where they were.

    We buy my DD and DS quite a bit of clothing from TDS. It used to be we'd walk in the store out of habit, with no intention of buying anything. Now there are many times we have to hold ourselves back from spending too much.

    Do I think the stores are perfect? Absolutely not. But then again I think the stores in WDW are pretty lousy these days, too. Unfortunately, I think WYSIWYG ... Disney's approach to merchandising is to "brand" the same products over and over with different characters for as cheaply as they can. Gone are the days of that unique, quality Disneyana item. This is it.
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    A year or two ago we went to the mall I used to frequent growing up. We passed by where the Disney Store used to be and it wasn't there so I was disappointed. It was so neat, I bought a lot of things there over the years. Then we went upstairs and found out there was a Disney Store in the mall still, but it was very different. The people working there were terrible, the whole place just left a bad taste in my mouth. I think our new mall has a Disney Store in it too... I think I'm over it though. Then again, I only go to the mall like once a year, so maybe if I went to the mall more I'd go to the Disney Store more. Who the heck knows?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flower View Post
    Glen, Are they looking at opening one in the 'Shwa?!!!! That would be awesome!!! I never get to Scarborough/Yorkdale. I wish they would open a Children's Place out here too.

    I think there has been a decline in products offered at TDS, but there is still some good stuff. I like getting the kids tee shirts when they are on sale.
    Yup next year sometime I've been told. Down near Build A Bear is what they are looking at. BTW the semi annual starts this coming weekend. I actually have a shift a whole 3 hours!!! 9-12 with a call in till 5pm. The stuff I want better be on sale.
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    I will agree with you Ian, their clothing selections really have improved in the quality, and in some cases the styles as well. That isn't really what I was getting at, TCP has been in business long enough to know how to make a quality product, its how they go about other parts of their business that is in question, and obviously they haven't been holding up their end of the bargain with Disney.

    And no, my wife and I do not have any children yet, but I do have a niece and nephews who did enjoy coming to see me at work. I did enjoy telling them I worked with Mickey Mouse
    But even though I have no children, I still don't think that it would change my feelings on this subject. Maybe I am the eternal optimist, but I still think that maybe someday someone in the company would want to bring back what the Disney Stores were all about back in the day. I know, the chances of that are slim, but as it stands the chances are 0% with "the disney stores" being out there already.

    BTW: on a separate note, I was thrilled to see that you won a nights stay in the Castle Suite, made the wife and I more than a little jealous, but knowing how much you love Disney, it was nice to see you have an opportunity like that one.
    Last edited by bwgens; 06-13-2007 at 02:07 AM. Reason: added text
    "Let your conscience be your guide..."

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    Smile

    Thanks! Hopefully the Castle Suite Pixie Dust will spread amongst our INTERCOT family here and more of us will win!

    In regards to TDS, I'm a former DS CM myself and I do know what you mean about how the stores were way back in the day. I guess I was more comparing today's DS to the way they were a few years back, at the bottom of the barrel time.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    Thanks! Hopefully the Castle Suite Pixie Dust will spread amongst our INTERCOT family here and more of us will win!
    Let's hope you're right, DW and I will be there for 11 days starting 7/26....woo-hoo!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by glenpreece View Post
    Yup next year sometime I've been told. Down near Build A Bear is what they are looking at. BTW the semi annual starts this coming weekend. I actually have a shift a whole 3 hours!!! 9-12 with a call in till 5pm. The stuff I want better be on sale.
    Oh boy (said in Mickey voice!!!) DH had better start working LOTS of overtime if TDS is coming so close!!!!! I can't wait!!!! Hahahaha!!!

    Thanks for the info on the sale - I may try to pop in Friday or Monday as we are heading to Niagara Falls for the weekend.
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    I am a former DS CM, and I left just as the mismanagement was going on. They really changed the focus for the CM's from service to sales. Now, I understand that it is a company and they are in the business to make money, but the DS's used to carry great merchandise that didn't need to be "pushed".

    I think the start of the mismanagement was the change in focus to the Tween market.... The merchandise just bombed!!!

    Then they got rid of mugs, snowglobes, adult pocket tees (which sold like crazy....), etc.

    I really wish the company would take back the stores and refocus to when they first opened: quality merchandise and one-of-a-kind Disney service/experience.
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    Ah, got ya Ian. I would agree with that also. As you said, the better quality of clothing is not in question, I actually liked a lot of what they did with it. Just didn't like them very much. And I hope the magic spreads as well, the wife and I will be there at the end of August.
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    Smile

    I have to be honest ... I personally think that selling the stores off was not the right call.

    I think the first thing they needed to do was consolidate the number of locations they had. A store in every shopping mall was not the right model. Disney merchandise is more specialized in the sense that you're willing to travel a bit to get it. I would say one or maybe two stores in each metropolitan area would be about right.

    Otherwise, you're essentially robbing business from yourself. If there was no Disney Store in my local mall, I'd travel to go to one every once in awhile. Why support the overhead of 6 or 7 stores when you can only have 1 and sell basically the same amount of merchandise?

    The other thing is, and here I'm just echoing what others have already said in this thread, the quality of the stuff on the shelves these days is pretty bad. The clothing is about the only quality stuff they sell anymore. All the toys are junk, for the most part. They're obviously the same kind of mass produced, made-in-China, sure-to-break-immediately stuff you can get in a Toys-R-Us somewhere. They just "brand" it with a Disney character and chuck it up on the shelf.

    Personally, think people expect more than that out of Disney.
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    Completly ,but I couldnt resist!
    Ian, I just noticed the new addition to your signature

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    Ian I agree with you on consolidating the stores. It's surprising that we still have 5 stores in the Toronto Area. Even after the switch over they all reamained. Fairview, Yorkdale, Square One, Eaton Centre and Scar. Town Centre. We were told that all the merchandise is made in the same place that only the clothes are differnt (mexico) and that's the children's place side of things. I also agree with the person above who pointed out the push to "sell" not "service" I can honestly say I am not looking forward to my shift on Sat.
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