Posts Tagged ‘Mindy Grossman’

Kirks Folly, Marianna Jacobs, Somers and Brand

September 18, 2017

We’re behind on our blogging, been busy at work, but here are some tidbits and observations.

Kirks Folly will be bringing its whimsical fairy dust, jewelry and home décor back to QVC on Sept. 29. The line, which beacons the angels among us, is either the silliest thing you have ever seen or something you fanatically love. Jenniefer Kirk posted on Facebook about her return.

Back in the day Jenniefer and then-QVC host Judy Crowell would get dressed up in elaborate outfits, and sell Kirks Folly from an elaborate set. Don’t know if we’ll be seeing that again.

Sterling silver designer Marianna Jacobs and her husband Richard have been on several home shopping networks selling their handmade jewelry. Most recently they did a stint on Evine before joining HSN.

Marianna was on HSN host Colleen Lopez’s “Designer Gallery” show on Sunday with her Travelers’ Journey line and it looked like she had a makeover. She was totally glam – blown-out hair, tailored attire, totally different that her former free hair, casual hippy kind of look. And her husband Richard isn’t mentioned, as far as we could tell. They used to appear on-air together. What’s up?

We briefly saw Suzanne Somers – who sent from HSN to Evine to QVC — recently with QVC host Rick Domeir. We thought she looked good as she touted her new book, which in part touts her long-term marriage. Our mom thought Somers looked terrible. We will tell you what was terrible: The way Domeir was fawning over her.

By now we all know that HSN, in advance of Hurricane Irma, let its employees go off the safety and packed up a crew to televise from makeshift studios in Nashville, Tenn. We have seen a promo several times now where our buddy Bill Brand, HSN’s president, thanked viewers for their good wished and prayers. With Mindy Grossman’s exit to join Oprah Winfrey’s Weight Watchers leaving a vacuum at the top at HSN, Brand may be her replacement.

Mindy’s Swan Song: HSN’s 1Q Sales Dip 3 Percent

May 4, 2017

The hits keep coming for home shopping, with HSN reporting on Wednesday that its sales slipped 3 percent, to $560.5 million, in the first quarter. And the channel put some of the blame on Leap Year.

“Excluding the benefit of having an additional day for leap year in the first quarter of 2016, HSN’s net sales decreased 2 percent,” the network said in its press release.

Mindy Grossman, HSN’s veteran CEO, was missing from the Wall Street conference call on the earnings. That’s because she’s leaving to join to head up Oprah Winfrey’s Weight Watcher’s International.

Last week HSN Inc., which includes not only the shopping channel but Cornerstone Brands Inc., announced that Grossman had resigned effective May 24. Until a successor is named, the board has established the Office of the Chief Executive consisting of Chief Financial Officer Rod Little, HSN President Bill Brand and Judy Schmeling, chief operating officer of HSNi and president of Cornerstone.

LIttle offered the canned statement:

We continue to focus on stabilization and ultimately growth regeneration in the business. The continued strength of digital sales, and mobile sales in particular, has been very encouraging. Digital sales, which now account for over half of our revenue, continued to grow both in absolute terms and as a proportion of total revenue. Mobile, which we see as our flagship, continues to be our fastest growing sales channel and significant source of new customer acquisition.

We remain committed to our strategies to improve our performance. Our key priorities are: acquiring and retaining customers via a robust and relevant product portfolio, optimizing our digital platforms, and improving our supply chain capabilities and efficiency, all to drive consistent shareholder value creation.

As we look to celebrate our 40th anniversary this summer, we thank Mindy Grossman for her vision, inspiration and leadership over the past decade.

HSN’s digital sales grew 3 percent with penetration increasing 290 basis points to 46.7 percent. Apparel, accessories, kitchen and home revenue increased, offset by decreases in other product categories. Shipping revenue declined main to the August 2016 changes in the network’s standard shipping rates and increased promotions.

The average price point increased 4 percent largely due to changes in product mix. Units shipped decreased 8 percent.

HSN’s gross profit decreased 4 percent to $191.1 million. Gross profit rate decreased 40 basis points to 34.1 percent primarily due to a decrease in shipping revenues and higher fulfillment costs, partially offset by an increase in product margins.

The increase in fulfillment costs was primarily the result of the ongoing implementation of HSN’s supply chain optimization which, among other things, includes expanding the automation capabilities in its Piney Flats, Tenn., distribution center.

HSNi’s net sales decreased 4% to $785.4 million. Excluding the results of TravelSmith and Chasing Fireflies, two Cornerstone brands divested last September, and an additional day for leap year within the HSN segment, HSNi’s net sales dropped 1 percent.

HSN To Post First-Quarter Results May 3

April 13, 2017

HSN will release its first-quarter earnings May 3 at 8 a.m. before the market opens, the network said on Wednesday.

CEO Mindy Grossman and Chief Financial Officer Rod Little will hold a conference call at 9 a.m. to review the results.

Those interested in participating in the conference call should dial 877-307-0246 or 224-357-2394 at least five minutes prior to the call.

 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 17 by dialing 855-859-2056 or 404-537-3406, plus the pass code 4007861 and will also be hosted on the company’s website for a limited time.

HSN CEO Grossman nabbed $5.4 Million Last Year

April 11, 2017

It’s the time of the year where you just might regret never aspiring to be head of a home shopping network:

It’s proxy time, when publicly traded companies disclose what they paid their executives.

According to papers filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday, HSN Inc. CEO Mindy Grossman received a tidy $5.4 million in executive compensation last year, up from $4.9 million in 2015. That included a $1.2 million base salary, with the rest in stock awards and Stock Appreciation Right, or SAR, options.

Bill Brand, president of HSN and chief marketing officer for HSN Inc., which includes not only the home shopping network but also the Cornerstone unit, got $1.6 million in executive comp, up from $1.6 million. His salary was $657,500, with the remainder stock and options.

And Judy Schmeling, president of Cornerstone and chief operating officer and chief financial officer of HSN Inc., was given $1.7 million in comp in 2016. That was an increase from $1.79 million in 2015.


HSN Catches Sheryl Crow’s First Fashion Line

February 23, 2017

Singer Sheryl Crow, whose “My Favorite Mistake” is one of our favorite songs, is the latest celeb to be doing a fashion line for HSN.

HSN CEO Mindy Grossman revealed that little tidbit during a fourth-quarter analyst call on Wednesday.

In fact, the No. 2 home shopping channel is going a little bit country. It has lined up a number of country artists to do merchandise for it this year.”

“We will celebrate Music City in Nashville, exposing customers to performers who have developed exclusive collection for HSN,” Grossman said, according to a transcript provided by Seeking Alpha.

“The new brand launches will include Sheryl Crow’s first fashion collection, LaBellum by Hillary Scott of Lady Antebellum, Patricia Nash Handbags and Kimberly Schlapman of Little Big Town with Kitchen.”

Crow’s line will debut April 13.

Here is what her website says:

Entertainment and lifestyle retailer HSN has partnered with singer, songwriter, and now fashion designer, Sheryl Crow for the upcoming exclusive debut of her first ever lyric inspired fashion line, Sheryl Crow, on April 13th.

The eponymous collection is vintage-inspired and features easy to wear styles for the everyday girl with a rock n’ roll twist. Each piece comes with an empowering and affirmative handwritten personal message or inspiring song lyric from Sheryl.

With prices ranging from $39.90 to $299.90, Sheryl Crow features effortless, ageless apparel and accessories that include novelty tanks and tees, embellished skinny jeans, denim jackets, cow-girl boots and booties, lightweight scarves, and a hobo bag.

HSN’s Q4 Sales Dip 1%, To $769 Million

February 22, 2017

HSN reported on Wednesday that its net sales dipped 1 percent, to $769.3 million, in the fourth quarter versus the prior year.

The No. 2 home shopping network said that the “decrease is largely due to a direct-response television marketing campaign that concluded earlier this year and the prior year’s incremental sales from the initial roll-out for a wholesale business expansion, offset by a 1 percent increase in HSN’s core business.”

Operating income also decreased, by 2 percent, to $64.6 million.

Digital sales rose 9 percent, with penetration increasing 440 basis points to 48 percent.

HSN’s sales increased in wellness, culinary and electronics, offset by decreases in jewelry, apparel and accessories and in shipping revenue.

The decrease in shipping revenue was primarily due to changes in the standard shipping rates, which became effective in last August, as well as increased promotions.

HSN is part of HSN Inc., which also includes the Cornerstone unit. HSNi’s net sales decreased 2 percent in the fourth quarter, to $1.1 billion, with Cornerstone’s net sales dropping 5 percent, to $304 million.

“Clearly, 2016 was a year of disruption in retail characterized by a distracting environment, cautious consumer spending and a heightened promotional climate,” HSN Inc. CEO Mindy Grossman said in a canned statement.

“While this impacted the performance of our business, we have been taking strategic actions to best position HSNi and take advantage of new opportunities, including building our brands with a continued emphasis on digital — now representing 55 percent of our business, with mobile 45 percent of digital.”

“In addition to the disruptive retail climate, our overall fourth-quarter results were affected by certain under-performing product categories — particularly jewelry at HSN and areas within home in the Cornerstone portfolio, the standardization of our shipping and handling practices at HSN and implementation of our supply chain optimization initiative. Also, our year-ago comparisons were distorted by the divestiture of two businesses,” Grossman added.

The home shopping network’s average price point decreased 2 percent, largely due to an increase in promotional activity and changes in product mix. Units shipped increased 2 percent.

Gross profit decreased 9 percent to $229.7 million. Gross profit rate decreased 250 basis points to 29.9 percent primarily due to higher shipping and handling costs and lower shipping revenues.

The increase in shipping and handling costs was largely due to the issues with the implementation of HSN’s supply-chain optimization, changes in product mix and increased shipping cost rates. The implementation issues reduced gross profit by $13 million, or 160 basis points as a percentage of net sales.

HSN said that began phasing in its expanded automation capabilities in its Piney Flats, Tenn., distribution center in the third quarter last year. During that conversion, HSN “experienced implementation issues which had an impact of approximately $16 million, or 19 cents per diluted share, in the fourth quarter which largely impacted gross profit and, to a lesser extent, operating expenses.”

Operating expenses increased 1 percent, to $165.1 million.

Adjusted EBITDA decreased 25 percent, to $75.8 million. Excluding the impact of the supply-chain optimization implementation, operating income was $80.6 million and adjusted EBITDA was $91.8 million, representing a 9 percent decrease.

HSN Inc. also appointed Rod Little as chief financial officer, reporting to Grossman. He comes to HSNi with significant public company expertise in the consumer-products industry, having served as CFO for Elizabeth Arden Inc. as well as a variety of leadership positions with Procter & Gamble.

“We expect our hard work and learnings from 2016 to position 2017 as a year of growth regeneration, with a laser-focus on our proprietary product pipeline; driving customer acquisition, retention and spend; optimizing digital platforms; leveraging our distributed commerce capabilities; advancing our supply chain initiatives and cultivating talent across the organization,” Grossman said.

“We will be executing against these priorities while investing in operational execution for future efficiency and leverage. am particularly excited that Rod Little has recently joined as CFO of HSNi. Rod will be a key partner as we evolve and pursue our strategies with an emphasis on growth, optimal resource allocation, expense management and value creation.”

HSN Pulls Bajalia Line After ‘Cheating’ Claims

February 8, 2017

HSN has stopped selling jewelry from Bajalia International Group after allegations that the firm, which gives work to women in countries like India, has been stiffing them.

The home shopping network made the decision, and CEO Mindy Grossman explained it at length, after the Tampa Bay Times did a devastating story about Bajalia and its founder and owner, Debbie Farah. The investigative piece alleges that Farah owes jewelry craftswomen, her vendors and her employees’ money, and that she made a practice of not paying them.

The Times did a great job on the story. We suggest you read it.

Farah’s pitch for Bajalia was that she was giving jobs to women in developing nations, and that these workers were toiling in safe, non-exploitive environments. But the lengthy piece sniffed out a number of not-so-happy campers who are waiting to be paid by Farah, who lives in a five-bedroom home in Florida.

For example, the Times interviewed Jenny McGee, who runs a nonprofit, the Starfish Project, that finds jobs for victims of human trafficking in Asia. They are owed $20,000 from Farah, McGee alleges.

“Vendors say they have repeatedly sought payment from Farah, only to be ignored or berated by phone or email,” The Times wrote. “One vendor hired a collections agency, but others say they had to eat their losses because there’s little international vendors can do to force payment from an American company.”

Or how about the woman in Afghanistan who had 50 workers crafting necklaces and bracelets, a $70,000 order for Bajalia, in 2014. They are still waiting to get paid, according to the Times.

Perhaps Farah doesn’t have the money to pay her bills because she bought a Lexus SUV, was prancing around in designer clothes, and was attending society events in Orlando.

This woman who has won many awards, making Newsweek’s the “150 Women Who Shake the World” list, “has a troubled financial history that includes felony charges for writing worthless checks, a bankruptcy and at least two home foreclosures,” the Times reported.

Here is Bajalia’s business model, apparently. It pays women $8 to $20 to make necklaces and bracelets with gemstones such as lapis. Bajalia, in turn, hawks the pieces for $300 or more on HSN.

The network, which started selling the Bajalia line in 2011, has pulled the jewelry off its website. A few days after the Times story appeared, Grossman wrote a letter to the paper where she said HSN was dedicated “to ethical practices.”

“When we learned of these claims, we removed all Bajalia jewelry from our websites and programming and put a hold on all product sales,” she wrote.

“We also initiated an internal review. The issues raised in the recent Tampa Bay Times article will now be included in that review, and we have asked Bajalia to provide us a full accounting of all products sold on HSN and status of payment to those vendors. We will review this information to ensure that anyone who had done business with HSN was treated properly and take appropriate steps if they have not.”

HSN’s Grossman Dishes A Bit On 3Q Call

November 11, 2016

We’ve been busy and just getting around to offering some tidbits from HSN honcho Mindy Grossman from her third-quarter call with analysts this week.

It was a tough one for the No. 2 home shopping network, which saw sales dip 3.5 percent $569.7 million.

Shoes and apparel from designer brands and personalities, namely Vince Camuto and Wendy Williams, proved to be bright spots for HSN, accordihg to Grossman.

“As part of our strategy to drive commerce on non-traditional platforms, we intensified our partnership with Wendy to include daily promotions on her highly followed, number one syndicated talk show as well as social activations leading up to our appearance on HSN and the launch of her Shoe Closet in a primetime special on The List and on,” Grossman said, according to a transcript from Seeking Alpha.

HSN has in fact really promoting Williams. We saw the network even ran an ad for her in the New York Post, of all places.

“Additionally, we’ve teamed up with award-winning entrepreneur and the creator of Dreamers Ventures, Liliana Gil Valletta, to launch Project American Dreams, a nationwide search to discover, mentor and fast-track product innovations created by Latino entrepreneurs on HSN in partnership with the National Hispanic Chamber of Commerce,” Grossman said.

“We’re also featured on CBS’s hit series, ‘Hatched,’ with a dedicated HSN presence as we identify new entrepreneurs with innovative products that we can exclusively bring to market,” she told Wall Street.

The other thing that caught our eye was this kernel about our favorite category, jewelry.

“As we reposition our jewelry portfolio, we recently launched an exclusive collection from Jay Strongwater, a luxury brand with a strong design aesthetic and following. We will be expanding the brand into home décor and collectibles,” Grossman said.

HSN Sales Drop 3.5 Percent In Third Quarter

November 7, 2016

HSN had another tough quarter this year.

Net sales for the third quarter were $569.7 million, a decrease of 3.5 percent from the prior year. That’s the second quarter in a row that revenue has dipped.

Digital sales grew 6.7 percent, with penetration increasing 430 basis points to 44.8 percent. Revenue for apparel and accessories and wellness rose, offset by decreases in other product categories and in shipping revenues, the network reported on Monday.

A decrease in shipping revenue was primarily due to increased promotions and changes in the standard shipping rates, which became effective in August.

The average price point decreased 5 percent, largely due to an increase in clearance activity and changes in product mix. Units shipped increased 1 percent.

Gross profit for the network decreased 7 percent to $190 million.

The gross profit rate decreased 130 basis points to 33.3 percent, primarily due to a decrease in shipping revenue and, to a lesser extent, increased clearance activity.

Operating expenses decreased 4 percent to $143 million, largely due to decreases in employee-related costs, primarily incentive compensation, and bad debt expense. Operating expenses (excluding non-cash charges) decreased 4 percent to $131.9 million.

HSN’s parent is HSN Inc., which also includes the Cornerstone unit. That unit divested two businesses in the third quarter, TravelSmith and Chasing Fireflies.

HSN INc.’s sales, HSN and Cornerstone, saw their overall sales dip 5 percent to $823 million, or 3 percent excluding the impact of the divested businesses

“Similar to last quarter, our third-quarter results reflect weaker performance in specific HSN merchandising categories; softness in the outdoor segment within the Cornerstone portfolio; and a difficult consumer environment,” HSN CEO Mindy Grossman said in a canned statement.

“This was compounded by disruptive and distracting high-profile media events, particularly in August and September, that influenced our customers’ buying patterns and television viewership behaviors.”

“We have strategic actions under way to improve HSNi’s performance and have made progress in certain areas,” Grossman said. “These include expanding our proprietary merchandising pipeline and unique destination programming; elevating our content, digital and data capabilities; extending our distributed commerce platforms including experiential retail; and the divestiture of businesses for a focused portfolio.

“While our near-term outlook remains cautious, and it will take time to fully realize the benefits of our initiatives, I am confident in our ability to execute on our plans while proactively managing our overall expenses to drive HSNi’s long-term performance and value creation for our shareholders.”

HSN To Post Third-Quarter Results Nov. 7

October 17, 2016

HSN Inc., parent of the No. 2 home shopping network, will release its third-quarter earnings Nov. 7.

CEO Mindy Grossman and Judy Schmeling, chief operating officer and chief financial officer and president of Cornerstone Brands, will hold a conference call at 9 a.m. to review the results.

Those interested in participating in the conference call should dial 877-307-0246 or 224-357-2394 at least five minutes prior to the call.

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 Monday, November 21, 2016 by dialing 855-859-2056 or 404-537-3406, plus the passcode 94629115 and will also be hosted on the company’s website for a limited time.