You are exactly correct. Merchandisers (and their buying teams) are critically important when it comes to store performance success.If what is on the store shelves it's not in current fashion demand, then customers will go elsewhere.
Regarding Maria Comfort, Hot Topic has a completely different concept than Wet Seal, it's too soon to tell whether Comfort is capable of understanding and executing Wet Seal's concept.
How can a merchandiser single handedly ruin you? Look at Chicos, J.Jill, Christoper and Banks, the recent decline of American Eagle and the subsequent dismissal of their CMO. As far as your theory on internal checks and balances goes your off on that thinking as well. Most of the CEO's and presidents in retail apparel are clueless about fashion trends. They are neither merchants nor have they been involved as buyers nor can they spot trends and do not go on buying trips seeking out new ideas. There are some exceptions but hardly the rule. They leave it up to the CMO's team and go with their guidance and purchasing.
As a matter of fact I have done my own research. That aside, lets analyze this purely from a business standpoint and how companies operate. You have Board of Directors, a CEO and CFO...then you have someone who is responsible for "Merchandising"...please logically and from a business standpoint, explain to me how someone who is responsible for "merchandising" single handedly can run a company into the ground with oversight from the BOARD OF DIRECTORS, the CEO and CFO. In my opinion, the ones to blame are the Board and the CEO not someone who is responsible for "merchandising".
What evidence do you have that Comfort single handedly ran her previous employer into the ground, with oversight from the CEO and Board????
You are basing how influential Comfort is because of "the splashy announcement" by Thomas? Then you go on to say "he didn't do that when they selected an office cleaning service...". Why must you continue to show your ignorance? Tell, which CEO has made a big splash about selecting a new cleaning service? Tell me which company has NOT made a "big splash" about a new exectutive that has been brought into the company?
Aside from my own due diligence, I trust that WTSLA's Board of Directors and CEO have done their due diligence prior to hiring Comfort.
The long and short, if you are not happy with the Board and CEO's decision to bring on Comfort, sell your shares, then you don't have to worry about it. As for me, I'm hanging on and will buy your shares on the open market and ride this all the way to the bank when the stock hits $12 within the next 6 months.
how can you call us all morons? have you done your own research to find out all you can about what we know about ms. comfort? perhaps we are much more informed than you wish to assume? what we don't know is why you choose to defend her w/o presenting any evidence as to why she should not be held responsible for the demise of her former employer. she was very influential at hott, and is being given a key position at wtsla. how do i know -- because thomas chose to make a big splashy announcement. he didn't do that when they selected an office cleaning service. other than challenging our penchant for tea leaves, what actual experience do you have to share about hott comfort?
I've been reading everyone's postings on hiring Comfort. The only conclusion I can come to is that you all are morons, the reason being 1) Comofrt didn't run her previous company, there are other executive management and board of directors who also have to buy-in into decisions and who also determine the strategy and direction of the company 2) WTSLA - for the same reason, Comfort isn't going to run the company, there are executives and board of directors who have already been at the company who's buy-in she has to get on ideas and actions, etc. for that reason. 3) How can you be so sure that Comfort ran her previous company down single handedly? Do you have support for this? How do you know that maybe she had some good ideas the executive management and the board didn't want to listen to that would have saved the company hind?
If you want to blame someone for your losses associated with investing in Comforts previous employer, point at yourself for not doing your home work on MANAGEMENT, YES that includes ALL EXECUTIVES and BOARD OF DIRECTORS, not ONE person!