Nordstrom Expands Rack Store Base in Minnesota

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Nordstrom Inc.’s (JWN) store expansion strategy continues as the company announced the opening of yet another Rack store in Minnesota. The store will be located at The Shops at Knollwood in St. Louis Park.

The new 33,000 square feet Rack store will be a part of the recently renovated section of The Shops at Knollwood mall, a property of Rouse Properties Inc. (RSE). The store will be sharing space with a host of popular retailers like Kohl's Corp. (KSS), DSW Inc. (DSW), Old Navy brand store of Gap Inc. (GPS), T.J. Maxx Home Goods store of The TJX Companies Inc. (TJX) and Cub Foods, a subsidiary of SUPERVALU Inc. (SVU).

Rouse Properties recently launched a redevelopment project at The Shops at Knollwood aimed at transforming the mall into a modern and highly appealing shopping destination. The store is expected to open its doors for Minnesota’s inhabitants in spring 2015.

The store will be Nordstrom’s third Rack store in Minnesota serving customers in St. Louis Park as well as the neighboring Minnetonka, Edina, Hopkins and south Minneapolis areas. Other Rack stores operating in the state include stores at Mall of America in Bloomington and at Arbor Lakes in Maple Grove.

Apart from this, the company operates a full-line Nordstrom store at the Mall of America in Bloomington and is scheduled to open another store at Ridgedale Shopping Center in Minnetonka by fall 2015.

Nordstrom Rack, being the off-price retail segment of the company, offers fashion-savvy customers with a wide range of on-trend apparel, footwear and other accessories at discounted prices. These Racks usually keep items from the main Nordstrom stores and its online store Nordstrom.com. Alongside these, the stores stack products bought from other big brands sold by the company.

Nordstrom’s focus on store expansion is evident from the series of Rack store openings since the beginning of fiscal 2014. Its latest store openings signify the company’s commitment toward strengthening its network with the aim of driving top-line growth.

During its first-quarter fiscal 2014 results, the company revealed that it opened 10 new Rack stores in the quarter, increasing the total store count to 270 as against 260 and 245 at the end of fourth quarter and first quarter, respectively, of fiscal 2013. The 270 stores include 117 full-line stores, 150 Nordstrom Rack stores, 2 Jeffrey boutiques and 1 clearance outlet.

Looking ahead, this Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company targets to further expand its store base by opening 20 new stores in the remaining period of fiscal 2014, which include 3 full-line stores and 17 Rack stores.

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