Esquire Ecommerce Effort CLAD Folds
Partnership with J.C. Penney launched in November.
After an extremely short run, J.C. Penneyâ€™s Esquire-curated ecommerce site, CLAD, shutters. CLAD debuted in November 2011, and its final sale will end January 31.
Shortly after its recent $38.5 million investment in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, the J.C. Penney Company pulled the plug on cladmen.com. It appears as if MSLOâ€™s physical presence (Martha Stewart brand sections are to debut in jcpenney stores in February 2013) meshed with the retailerâ€™s new brand strategy, while Esquireâ€™s digital CLAD did not.
Of the decision to close CLAD, a J.C. Penney spokesperson says, â€śCLAD will cease operations effective April 27 in order to focus on the transformation of our core brand, jcpenney.â€ť
In November, Esquire editor-in-chief David Granger told FOLIO:, â€śEsquire has been exploring ecommerce operations for more than two years and the J.C. Penney opportunity--which is part of a larger corporate deal created by the CEOs of Hearst and J.C. Penneyâ€”offered us more creative input than any of the other options we explored. At the same time, it allowed us to work with one of the major players in retail.â€ť
CLADâ€™s closure follows J.C. Penneyâ€™s introduction of its Fair and Square Pricing strategy, among other new initiatives.
A company statement describes the new pricing system, â€śEveryday, regular prices,; Month-Long Values, even better prices on the things you need now; and Best Prices, jcpenney's lowest prices, which always happen on the 1st and 3rd Fridays of every month.â€ť
The J.C. Penney Company also announced plans to reorganize its stores into â€śa series of 80 to 100 brand shops. And, throughout, the new jcpenney store experience will merge the physical and digital worlds, assuming the physical retail storesâ€™ vital role as the centerpiece of retailingâ€™s future.â€ť
Esquire publisher Hearst also did not immediately respond to inquiries concerning the closure.