Breaking News | Is Barneys about to become a basket case?

News has been trickling in all week about confusion around the strategic direction being taken by Barneys and today, the New York Times is reporting that its highly respected CEO Howard Socol will resign next week. This is an abrupt change of tone in the buzz around Barneys, which is arguably the most influential and forward thinking luxury and fashion department store chain in America today. Bergdorf Goodman, of course is a venerable store in its own right, but it only has one location in New York and  its sister company, Neiman Marcus, based in Dallas, is far removed from the New York fashion hub. Yes, Neimans serves an unequaled luxury customer, but it just does not have the fashion…

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London Fashion Week | Tough times ahead

Everyone's talking about London's young designer set -- and the news is not good. The media has been buzzing about the wave of  familiar faces who will be missing from the front rows this season. Julie Gilhart, Ron Frasch, and Ken Downing won't be making it to London Fashion Week this season to represent major American department stores Barneys, Saks and Neiman Marcus, respectively. For Julie, a fervent supporter of London's emerging brands, it is the first time in 20 years that she won't be here. These buyers have told the press that unless London's designers produce something very special or have strong existing relationships with US retailers, they will have a hard time making up for the spiralling effect…

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