Coach shares tumbled by more than 6% after the company reported Wednesday that North American same-store sales plunged 13.6% in the most recent quarter.
Coach executives conceded in an earnings call that rivals such as Michael Kors and Tory Burch have taken market share. The company also said it's seeing "substantially lower traffic" in stores as the company tries to transform into a lifestyle brand by offering more than just handbags, such as footwear and accessories.
We saw evidence of this at Bloomingdale's during the holiday shopping season. We visited Coach's shoe display and found it empty, while the neighboring Tory Burch display was packed with customers.
Here's a photo of the Tory Burch display:
Now here's the Coach display with part of Tory Burch's department — marked by the green carpet — visible to the right:
One sales representative in the Tory Burch department appeared to be solely assigned to the task of running inventory between the display area and the stock room.
As he hustled back and forth with his arms full of Tory Burch shoe boxes, another sales representative followed customers around to replace shoes that never remained long on the display shelves.
Here's another look at the Tory Burch display:
Meanwhile, over in the Coach department, the shoes remained untouched.
At one point, one lone customer sat on the leather couch in the display area and tried on a pair of Tory Burch shoes:
Coach CEO Lew Frankfort said last month that the company's footwear category is driving "excellent growth," moving from 4% of the business last year to 8% this year. He did not go into further detail on footwear sales.
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