Archive for April, 2011

QVC Does Its Royal Wedding Thang

April 29, 2011

QVC will be profiting on today’s of “William and Kate” (the home shopping network is apparently on a first-name basis with the royals) with a special six-hour broadcast dedicated to the Royal Wedding.

The Royal Affair programming, scheduled to air 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will feature officially licensed memorabilia and collectibles, as well as Kate Middleton-inspired fashion and jewelry pieces.

QVC will be hawking merchandise as Clogau Gold (the official gold of the Royal Family), smashbox, Isaac Mizrahi, Kenneth Jay Lane, Darlington Crystal and more, the Royal Affair broadcasts will be accompanied by exclusive online content on, including tips from wedding experts and additional “royal” products.

“As one of the most significant pop culture events of our time, the Royal Wedding has sparked a level of intrigue in almost all of us,” QVC host Jane Treacy said in a canned statement. “We are thrilled to not only help our customers to celebrate this exciting event but to also give them the opportunity to own a piece of history.”

Signature Royal Affair pieces include a set of a Clogau Gold wedding bands, a Darlington Crystal Bowl or Vase, and the Kenneth Jay Lane Princess Sapphire Ring, which has sold more than 53,000 units since its November debut.

Sur La Table Shakes Up Some Sales On ShopNBC

April 27, 2011

ShopNBC is getting cute with its press relases, and we actually likey.

It announced Tuesday that the debut of its Sur La Table Kitchen show series Monday “cooked up four sell-outs in short order, including the network’s Today’s Top Value offer.”

Here’s what else the press release said: “With a 30-year heritage, Sur La Table’s namesake line of fine kitchenware and innovative gadgets, including a number of exclusive Cuisinart appliances, met with great customer enthusiasm and achieved strong performance across the ShopNBC network.”

The Sur La Table Today’s Top Value, a 10-Piece Hard Anodized Cookware Set, sold out, making it the network’s most successful Top Value cookware offer ever.

Additional bestsellers during the Sur La Table show series included three sell-outs in less than 20 minutes. Customers ordered all available units of the Sur La Table Set-of-Two Hard Anodized Nonstick Skillets, Cuisinart Smart Stick 200 Watt Immersion Blender, and Cuisinart 1.5 Quart Three-in-One Frozen Yogurt, Ice Cream & Sorbet Maker.

ShopNBC claims that the “special” appearance of QVC retread Bob Bowersox was a plus, but we believe the network exaggerated a bit.

“Households across America were mesmerized by his extensive kitchen know-how, practical advice and helpful presentations,” the ShopNBC press release said.

Mesmerized? We find that hard to swallow.

“The strong debut of our brand on ShopNBC was a great opportunity fully realized,” Jacob Maurer, vice president of merchandising, said in a canned statement. “I was very much impressed by how positively our premium lifestyle brand was received by the ShopNBC customer as well as by the successful sell-through of our featured products. The ShopNBC team was an absolute pleasure to work with. All of us at Sur La Table look forward to our future endeavors together.”

And leave it to ShopNBC president Bob Ayd to get his two cents in.

“We are thrilled with the resounding customer response to the Sur La Table brand,” Ayd said in his canned statement. “Our customers have a passion for cooking and crave newness. I’m so pleased in how wedelivered an entertaining shopping experience across our network, showcasing an assortment of exclusive kitchen must-haves at compelling values. We look forward to providing our customers with ongoing access to the premium Sur La Table product and culinary experience.”

Learn The Inside Dish On QVC’s Rick Domeier

April 26, 2011

We’re still having issues with WordPress, so bear with us.

Thanks to the reader who tipped us off to this fascinating profile of QVC host Rick Domeier, whose credentials apparently range from doing Shakespeare to playing “Teen Wolf” in a low-rent horror movie.

And you only thought Rick knew how to trade jibes with Joan Rivers!

The story ran in Broadway World, here is the link:

Domeier, who has been promoting his book “Can I Have A Do-Over?,” had an acting career and some meaty roles before landing in West Chester, Pa. He played Hal Carter in “Picnic” and was in the play “Sexual Perversity in Chicago.”

He has a self-deprecating sense of humor about his pre-QVC acting career, describing the time he missed his cue while appearing in the soap opera “The Days of Our Lives” and his experience playing the teen wolf in Sam Raimi’s Movie “Teen Wolf.” The FX, special effects and makeup, left a lot to be desired in that one. We’ll leave it at that.

The story also talks about Domeier making references to F. Scott Fitzgerald, Tennessee Williams and Shakespeare when he’s hawking product on QVC. We’ve been watching QVC for more than a decade, and we’ve never heard of those types of allusions come from Rick’s lips. But maybe we were just too engrossed by the jewelry he was selling at the time.

The profile was written by a guy, but the story was written from the eye of a straight gal.

Here are some of the descriptions of Rick:

After watching the man in action, one quickly realizes that he’s quite intelligent, well-read and still has a penchant for the performing arts. Oh yes, he’s very good-looking, too. His blind hair sets off his blue eyes and the whitest of white teeth.

And that physique of his is amply displayed when he demonstrates workout equipment so that people on various message board post comments that would normally be reserved for the likes of Brad Pitt or Jake Gyllenhall.

We bet Rick blushed at that!

It also says that he was a party boy in college. What a surprise!

Anyway, the story is a good read and tells us more about Domeier than we’ve ever known.

The profile is so well done, we wish we’d written it.

ShopNBC Sets Summer Beauty Day For Sunday

April 26, 2011

Stop the presses: ShopNBC’s Beauty Day, Summer Edition will be this Sunday.

It is “all about simplifying your summer beauty style with the latest in haircare, color cosmetics, skincare, bath and body, and tanning,” so ShopNBC says.

The fun starts early, Saturday actually, at 9 p.m.

There will be the debut of Epione Skincare, a targeted line of skincare from Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Simon Ourian, the launch of an expanded assortment of Christi Harris Color Cosmetics as well as a special offer on the worldwide premiere of the brand new DermaWand RHF.

Peter Coppola Haircare will return for the first time since its debut in March and customer favorites from Toni Brattin and Celestine Signature Color Cosmetics will also be available.

Sur La Table Coming To ShopNBC Monday, Dragging Along QVC Vet Bob Bowersox

April 22, 2011

National kitchenware retailer Sur La Table, who we know from Kierland Commons in Scottsdale, will be debuting on ShopNBC Monday.

“Never before seen on TV retailing,” as the press release says, the Sur La Table Kitchen Show will feature the retailer’s namesake line of kitchenware and gadgets, including exclusive Cuisinart appliances, to the delight of ShopNBC’s loyal viewers, who are sure to get everything they need to make the kitchen the center of their home.

As part of the premiere, The Sur La Table Kitchen Show will include cookware, bakeware, gadgets, cutlery and table settings
as well as exclusive, brightly colored Cuisinart appliances including mixers, food processors, blenders and more.

Sur La Table guest expert Jacob Maurer with be showing off the latest innovations and technology in kitchen appliances as well as unique and exclusive items including knives, kitchen tools and tableware.

In addition, ShopNBC culinary expert and cook book author Bob Bowersox — a QVC retread — will launch The Sur La Table Show premiere with a “Today’s Top Value” offer: The Sur La Table 10-Piece Hard Anodized Cookware Set with Bonus Cookbook, a $435 retail value available for $176.54 on that day only.

For more than 20 years (many of them at QVC, which ShopNBC fails to mention). Bowersox “has entertained households across America with his extensive knowledge, down-to-earth charm, and helpful presentations of kitchen innovations and appliances. From showcasing the latest in time-saving gadgets to sharing his own personal recipes, Bob’s kitchen know-how and advice gets viewers cooking with surprising and delicious results,” according to ShopNBC’s press release.

“We are thrilled to bring the premium brand of Sur La Table and its unique brand experience live to our customers,” ShopNBC president Bob Ayd said in a canned statement. “With a heritage of over 30-years, Sur La Table’s debut will entice cooks from all walks of life to interact with ShopNBC and shop a broad assortment of classic kitchenware and unique gadgets. We look forward to adding new flavor to their dedication to culinary diversity, innovation and authenticity — all at exceptional product and presentation values.”

“We’re excited to partner with ShopNBC on the premiere of The Sur La Table Kitchen Show,” Jacob Maurer, vice president of merchandising Sur La Table, we assume. “We are delighted to bring our passion for cooking and artful entertaining to the ShopNBC customer.”

ShopNBC To Report First-Quarter Earnings May 11

April 21, 2011

ValueVision Media, dba ShopNBC, will release its first-quarter financial results before the market opens May 11, the company said Thursday.

The home shopping network will host a conference call and simultaneous webcast at 11 a.m.

Participating in the call will be CEO Keith Stewart, President Bob Ayd and Chief Financial Officer Bill McGrath.

Both the call and webcast are open to the general public.

QVC Gets New Affiliate Sales Chief: He’s The Dude That Gets The Home Shopping Net On Your TV Set

April 20, 2011

As Jack Nicholson said in “The Shining,” we’re back….

We missed you guys, but an inexplicable problem with WordPress kept us off the air, so to speak, for a fews days.

We got back on track just in time to see that QVC has once again failed to send us an important press release. The channel’s longtime head of affiliate sales is retiring and is being succeeded by a young whippersnapper.

We covered the cable industry for almost two decades, so we can clue you in that affiliate sales is one of the most important gigs at a cable network — and these executives are often among the highest-paid at a network.

In the case of QVC, senior vice president of affiliate sales and marketing Al Ulozas was the exec who would meet with cable companies, like a Comcast, or a satellite company, like DirecTV or Dish, and negotiates deals to get these distributors to carry the home shopping channel.

Getting a good channel position (a low one) for a network like QVC, for example, is crucial in terms of trying to get people to watch it.

Well Ulozas, who has been with QVC for 23 years, is retiring next month. He will be replaced by Dave Apostolic, who currently is vice president of affiliate sales and marketing.

QVC has promoted Andy Celllucci to vice president of affiliate marketing to fill Apostolico’s slot.

“During his more than 23 years with the company, Ulozas was an integral part of formulating nearly every incentive used to increase QVC’s channel distribution,” QVC said in its press release.

“He began his QVC career in 1987 as regional account manager of affiliate relations and over the next 12 years, his career quickly progressed, holding roles of increasing responsibility,” it said.

“In 1999, Ulozas was promoted to senior vice president of affiliate sales and marketing where he oversaw the overall strengthening of strategic relationships with the company‟s distributors throughout the United States,” the release said.

“As a result of his efforts, he helped increase QVC’s program distribution – with the ultimate goal of making QVC available in every household in the United States.”

Apostolico will report to Angie Simmons, QVC’s executive vice president of multichannel platforms.

In this position, Apostolico “will further the team’s efforts to increase QVC‟s program distribution throughout the country by strengthening relationships with key affiliates,”

He will also be responsible for developing strategic affiliate and trade marketing activities and negotiating carriage and preferable channel positions for the cable retailer.

Apostolico most recently served as the vice president of affiliate sales and marketing for QVC where he was responsible for overseeing contract negotiations, strategizing QVC’s digital plans and new carriage opportunities, and directing the activities of a nationwide account management team.

Joining QVC in 1996 as associate counsel and later promoted to senior counsel in the QVC legal department, Apostolico worked on a number of transactions and negotiations, including the company’s distribution centers in Rocky Mount, N.C., and Florence, S.C.

Apostolico earned his bachelor’ degree in business administration from the University of Delaware, Newark, Del. and his law degree from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N.C.

Cellucci will report to Apostolico. In this position, Cellucci will be responsible for contract negotiations, strategizing QVC’s digital plans and new carriage opportunities, and directing the activities of a nationwide account management team.

Since joining QVC 18 years ago, Cellucci has held numerous positions throughout the company and maintains an enviable network of colleagues within QVC‟s global company.

Most recently, he traveled to Germany to oversee enhancements to the affiliate distributor commission processes. In addition, playing an integral role in QVC’s HD launch, Cellucci negotiated terms with one of QVC’s major long-standing distributors.

Cellucci earned his bachelor’s degree in economics from Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pa.

Here are QVC U.S. CEO Claire Watts canned comments Ulozas’s retirement:

“We are going to miss Al’s leadership, knowledge and vision. His contributions to QVC extend beyond his many business accomplishments; with his sense of fairness, integrity, and humor, he has also helped shape QVC‟s culture and built many lasting friendships throughout our industry. We wish Al the warmest congratulations on a great career with QVC.”

Simmons’ canned comment:

“While we are going to miss Al, we are excited to celebrate both Dave and Andy’s well-deserved promotions. We look forward to leveraging our talent, past and present, to align our platforms to support short- and long-term relationships with our cable, satellite and telco affiliates.”

Sephora Alum Named General Manager Of Beauty At HSN

April 18, 2011

HSN has appointed Sephora veteran Betsy Olum general manager of beauty and merchandising strategy, a new position.

She will report directly to Lynne Ronon, HSN executive vice president of merchandising.

Olum will be responsible for developing and implementing innovative merchandising strategies designed to maximize HSN’s beauty business. She will also work with HSN’s senior merchandising team to identify strategies to position HSN for accelerated growth.

In addition, Olum will be charged with analyzing assortments, evaluating brand productivity and identifying merchandising opportunities across all of the company’s divisions.

“We are thrilled to welcome to our team one of the beauty industry’s best-known and most accomplished marketers,” HSN CEO Mindy Grossman said in a canned statement. “Betsy’s appointment underscores our commitment to expanding our beauty portfolio with unique brands and products as well as maximizing our assortments and products across all of our categories and driving their expansion.”

Olum began consulting for HSN in January, overseeing the overall assessment of the company’s beauty business. Previously, she spent 10 years at Sephora as the senior vice president of marketing, where she is credited with creating and launching the Sephora brand in the United States while developing, branding and launching some of the company’s most successful brand partners.

Prior to joining Sephora, Olum was general manager, North America at Escada Beaute, which she helped build in the U.S., initially as the vice president of global marketing and creative director, and subsequently as general manager for North America.

In 1999, she opened Prema Nolita Day Spa in New York, which she owned and operated for five years while simultaneously working as a brand consultant for Sephora. She has also held marketing positions at Avon, Charles of the Ritz and Erno Laszlo, and served as a buyer in the cosmetics department for Bloomingdale’s.

Olum was awarded a fellowship to the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where she received an MBA, and she earned her bachelor’s degree from Colgate University. She is on the Board of Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW) and was awarded the CEW Achiever Award in 2008.

HSN To Report First-Quarter Results May 4

April 15, 2011

HSN will release its first-quarter earnings May 4 at 8 a.m. before the market opens.

CEO Mindy Grossman and Judy Schmeling, executive vice president and chief financial officer, will hold a conference call at 9 a.m. to review these results.

There will also be a simultaneous audio webcast available via the company’s website at

A replay of the conference call can be accessed until May 18 by dialing 800-642-1687 or 706-645-9291, plus the passcode 59499214 and will also be hosted on the company’s website for a limited time.

ShopNBC Jumps On Royal Wedding Bandwagon With CD Of The Ceremony

April 14, 2011

ShopNBC is looking to get a lot of mileage out of the wedding later this month of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in Westminster Abbey.

The No. 3 home shopping network Wednesday announced the of the retailing launch of the Royal Wedding CD, Album and Poster this week. The wedding is April 29, just a slightly more important event than our birthday the day before.

The Royal Wedding CD, Album & Poster (K400597 – $21.42) that is is on pre-sale features the wedding ceremony in its entirety, including the readings, vows, hymns and blessings, as well as all the music from what is expected to be a global event.

As part of the official Royal Wedding audio CD offer by ShopNBC is a photo booklet featuring the complete order of service as well as an exclusive poster of the royal couple featured on the album CD.

The official audio recording of the Royal Wedding event will feature music from the Choir of Westminster Abbey, the Chapel Royal Choir, The London Chamber Orchestra and The Fanfare Team from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force.

The choirs will be under the direction of James O’Donnell and The London Chamber Orchestra conducted by its music director and principle conductor Christopher Warren-Green.

The album CD is produced by classical record producers, Anna Barry, who has produced over 500 recordings of distinction for more than 25 years, ranging from works by Andrew Lloyd Webber to opera at the Mariinsky Theatre with Valery Gergiev, and many other legendary artists including Jose Carreras and Zubin Mehta.

“We are excited about featuring this timely and topical offer to our customers,” ShopNBC host Daniel Green said in a canned statement. “Appealing to consumers of all ages, the audio recording and memorabilia of the Royal Wedding will be available to the delight and convenience of millions of ShopNBC homes across the country. Our feature presentation will build upon the massive, global excitement of the Royal Wedding, allowing our customers to secure a piece of history and relive their memories
of this prominent event for years to come.”