Good Evening, Kruporama,
A search of the term "LED LIghts" yields nothing of the sort on the HD web site. No CREE product comes up ,and there is no mention of CREE under this search term. Are you sure you are reporting this correctly?
It's not that they just figured it out (imo). CREE is getting their butt kicked in the marketplace because they dont' understand sales, they don't understand marketing, but they do understand the needs of the lighting industry. SHORT SHORTSHORT If not now, and I lose this trade because I'm too early they still will not succeed in the marketplace unless they fix what I am talking about. VP sales with no consumer products sales experience? Are you kidding me? You'll see.
No sir, that's not true. The in-store buying process is not static, it's dynamic.
For instance, end aisle displays are put there to be prominent (and manufacturers pay dearly for the display, and hopefully, a corresponding feature ad in the circular).
Shelf space also influences purchase decisions. A consumer is much more likely to purchase a product with an overwhelming presence, and many more SKU's to select from, than one with only four facings, buried on the second from bottom shelf (Glendale store). Also, you want to place the right amount of facings for a product based upon its throughput (as you referenced). But the way it works is, you need to have enough product in stock, and in the first row closest to the customer, to accommodate the demand. The shelf stockers must constantly pull product forward is the other part. The four facings on CREE indicate that they are either out of stock (don't think so, because there were no empty facings with CREE UPC's), or the store has decided that the variable profit contribution provided by each unit sold is superior for Phiips (or ecosmart) versus CREE. So they set up their SHARE OF SHELF in proportion with their desired sales mix. In some categories (and this could be one of them), they set up the planogram (shelf mix) consistent with the Brand's market share. so if CREE has 30% market share in Tuscon, they should get 30% of the shelf in the TUscon Home Depot (or more if HD wants to push CREE). Either case, this reduced shelf space is a negative finding, unless other reasons can be surfaced. If national, look out.
That's a very basic explanation, but it's how things work. And by the way, it's the VP of Sales who oversees all of this, and a guy who has no experience in constructing retail programs and deals is, in my opinion, dead out of the starting gate. This company is technology-driven, not marketing-sales driven. They need to be both and I'm seeing they don't get it. Short.
Not 75 SKU's - 75 facings --
It's about the amount of product they have on the shelf for sale -- not the amount of different types
Added to it today, Quantum. I've got a longer term perspective on this one than a few days. I think this company is in trouble. Management laid it out in the last call, and these developments -- the sales force -- are indicative of organizational meltdown. The loss of shelf space I saw needs to be confirmed. No irresponsible rumors here, as any poster can walk into that store I posted below - tonight, and see exactly what is being spoken about. In terms of my trade, if it's a losing one, i'll post that for sure. Not all of them win. -- So your "sensing" my short is currently under water is not prescient. I told you.
Hey, Creamer -- I've seen your backs and forths. I can't pile on to your cause. I trade Cree. I haven't invested in it to date, like other posters. I am often long, often short. So our objectives (mine and yours) are different.
I'm short right now, and yes, if the pps goes down, I will profit. I am posting this information because, it's consistent with my holding, but also because I believe it may be significant news. What I and others saw in past few days is extraordinary.
I wish you luck whatever it is you do. For my part, I've got a short trade on here, I see a brand in an amazing category that is flailing, and making decisions in Sales and Marketing that are wasteful and almost bizarre.
Then, this past weekend, I may have seen the cause of the sales force leadership change, or the result, I'm not sure. Either way, this brand is in short supply in several HD's in New York, they are the primary retail distribution outlet, and if there is a problem with this distribution, there is a major problem for Cree's numbers and the brand.
Anyone, repeat, anyone - should walk into that Glendale store themselves and see what I'm talking about. Any input from posters in other areas of the country would be welcome. If distributin remains the same as it was, and the new York stores are an anomaly, then that should be posted here, by me or someone else, as quickly as I posted the above factual information.
I just spoke to the individual in Queens. The store is the "Glendale" store on Metropolitan Avenue and Woodhaven Boulevard. There are 4 - repeat 4 CREE facings in the store as of yesterday. A facing is defined as a product on the shelf, with additional product behind it. So a row of 5 CREE boxes across, with product behind the front boxes, would be "5 facings".
As of yesterday, CREE had 4 facings in Glendale, down from approximately 75 facings only 30days before. That's a 95% reduction of shelf presence.
I'm sorry, that doesn't happen for no reason. If anyone lives near this store, walk in and see yourself.
I just called and spoke with a sales associate (not much credibility there), but here's what the person said. "I don't know, I'm not being given CREE bulbs to stock on the shelf anymore. Our management ispushing us to sell the Philips, and to show people the Philips if they ask for CREE.
Go in and look for yourself. If this is happening anywhere else and isn't an anomaly, then it's a big deal. I remain short, I want to be clear about that - but this is the newest reason why.
If I were Philips, I would use my deep pockets to beat CREE into the ground at Retail. I would displace them from their distribution, create a downward sales spiral for the brand (because financially, I could outgun this little SC player in a war for retail distribution and sell thru programs).
Then, when they were laying on the ground, writhing, with a market cap half what it is today, their sales force jumping ship and suppliers turning their back, I would buy them for their IP, remaining distribution, and to lock in this exploding segment.
This isn't much different from the cola wars, the motor oil wars, or any other consumer wars. It's a consumer product, and what I and others saw at Home Depot this weekend - if representative nationally - and combined with the sales force firings -- is a death knell for the reasons stated above.
Other posters should go into their local Home Depots ASAP and see if the CREE presence is less than it was, or almost nothing now like in NY. Maybe this is a local DC (Distribution Center) Problem for HD in the Northeast Region, or something like that. But it's definitely a huge change, and if there isn't a reason surfaced then my bet is CREE's distribution at HD has either been scaled way back, or possibly cancelled, or cancelled for many, many SKU's.
Facings are down to almost nothing in Manhattan Store. One of the Queens stores is down to nothing.
THEY MAY HAVE LOST THIS ACCOUNT. Idon't know how a manufacturer goes from 40 or 50 facings, displays, feature ads, complete focus -- to NOTHING.
Of course, different brands are rotated for promotion. So yes, ads, displays - come and go. But the facings, There were, like 10 BULBS on the shelf (CREE) versus thousands for Philips.
This, the sales force firings, something very wrong.
One poster said CRee should negotiate with Home Depot and drop them. Good luck. Lose that retail distribution and kiss the brand goodbye. I don't care how good the bulbs are.
I was in a New York Area Home Depot this weekend. CREE has been reduced to 9 facings versus hundreds for Philips. Philips dominates the store, unlike just four weeks ago, where CREE had much more share of shelf. CREE merchandising gone, displays gone, facings way down, Philips way up.
They've installed a Sales Leader for Lighting who has NO RETAIL OR TRADE EXPERIENCE. A sales leader in consumer products is a very long stretch to succeed with no consumer savvy and no trade relationships/experience. It's very different from selling components to lighting manufacturers, as this guy did -- a business to business sales situation. Combine this with the reduced presence at Home Depot, the Company's primary trade partner, and you have a company in trouble here.
Also -- the new leader for components HAS NO SALES EXPERIENCE WHATSOEVER. Enough said. These people are engineers but they're not marketers. Game over. Not right away, they may have spikes, and they could be taken out if their IP is worth it. But you'll see.
CREE, as it exists today, is in trouble.
Do you believe that Barlow's experience in LED Component Sales will make him an effective Lighting Sales Leader? Te concern I have is the vastly decreased presence I saw in HD today - only 10 facings for CREE, and hundreds for Philips. CREE has lost key distribution at retail, and a guy with no retail experience may know what the industry wants, but not what consumers and the retail trade want.
McClear, now head of Component Sales -- does not have any pure sales experience."
Do these guys look like the right ones?
The two new sales heads — Steve Barlow in lighting and Mark McClear in LED components — represent a bit of a departure from the norm, Huang says.
Barlow's experience "has been almost exclusively in LED component sales," while McClear has "primarily focused on applications engineering and customer support in the components business."
Cree officials "must believe that more than 14 years of experience selling LED components to lighting customers give (Barlow) an in-depth understanding of what the lighting industry wants and in what direction the lighting industry is moving," Huang noted.
He added that while McClear "does not have any pure sales experience, in our view, his in-depth knowledge of the technology and the customer base will enable him to succeed in his new role."
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Not a good weekend to be holding. Still short, and that's part of reason why. Maintaining tight stops, never know with CREE. Expiration also a wildcard later.
Just heard the CNBC segment about how overbought the semiconductor segment is and facing consolidation at least. I can't see any reason to be long right now as a trade, but know that could change.
It's expected. This sally character shows up at weekly/monthly options expiration and does its thing. Roundly ignored on ENOC board for months now. It's said I'm on ignore, how many times now? But compulsively posts, can't help it. You're watching an old man who is clinging to his miserable last years an the Yahoo chatboard. I'm sorry for this silly character, as I've said before.
PS - it's clown calls on ENOC, merciless pumping, have made Silly Sally a laughing stock over there. Very transparent, always at expiration.
Friday 5:50 EST
European shares head for first weekly drop since April
Concerns about Iraq and Ukraine and subdued economic data left European shares facing their first week of losses since early April on Friday and nudged gold towards a two-month high. Other safe-haven assets including the yen, Swiss franc and German government bonds were also in demand as investors took a step back from riskier bets. The situation in Iraq was tense overnight after at least one armed forces helicopter crashed under fire from insurgents
Magic8ball, As a Management/Marketing guy who grew up professionally in Sales, I appreciate your insight. It comes from someone who gets it, the culture of leadership in a healthy sales organization.
CREE is a story stock just like ENOC. They both have terrific products/services. But the emotional story (pumped weekly and monthly by the option sellers and others) fades when the multiple is exposed as non-sustainable. This earnings report was an inflection point, with management all but acknowledging this, that going forward EPS growth is moderating.
I don't know if the right valuation is 35, 45, 55 or what. But the trend, I can't see as up significantly, unless they show how their current and proposed product lineup (both sides of the business) gets them there.
I love their stuff, with my desk lit by the 75W replacement right now. But EPS growth-wise, the bloom is off the rose.