aNb Media News, December 3, 2013

Black Weekend Shopping Results

Initial shopping statistics are rolling in from what has become known as Black Weekend.

ShopperTrak announced this morning that brick-and-mortar retail sales increased 1 percent as shoppers spent an estimated total of $22.2 billion across the four days. Retail shopper traffic decreased by 4 percent, to an estimated 1.8 billion store visits. ShopperTrak says customers researched store merchandise online first and more often came to stores ready to buy particular products.

Total in-store shopper traffic increased by 9.4 percent in the apparel sector, while traffic in the electronics sector decreased by 6.5 percent for that same time period.

Thanksgiving Day accounted for 10 percent of the four-day weekend’s retail traffic in 2013. Thursday and Friday’s sales and traffic increased when compared to last year. However, both Saturday and Sunday saw store traffic and sales tail off and drop.

National Retail Federation says that Black Friday was the biggest shopping day this weekend as more than 92 million people shopped (65.2 percent) for apparel, electronics and more, up from nearly 89 million last year.

Shoppers spent an average of $407.02 from Thursday through Sunday (planned), down from $423.55 last year.

One-quarter (25.4 percent) of holiday shoppers say they were at stores by 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving night; nearly four in 10 (37.3 percent) were at stores by midnight, up from 28 percent last year. And, more than one-third (35.8 percent) didn’t arrive at stores until 10 a.m. or later.

Consumers also spent more of their holiday budgets online. According to the NRF, four in 10 (42.1 percent) indicated they shopped online over the weekend, or approximately 59 million shoppers.

Of those, the average person spent $177.67 online over the weekend, or approximately 43.7 of their total weekend spending, up from 40.7 percent last year. NRF also asked shoppers which days they shopped online—more than one-quarter (26.5 percent) of holiday shoppers said they shopped online on Thanksgiving Day, and nearly half (47.1 percent) shopped online on Black Friday. Additionally, 35.7 percent shopped online on Saturday and 24.5 percent have shopped or will shop online on Sunday. Cyber Monday results were not yet available.

DHX Media Aquires Family Channel Canada

DHX Media Ltd. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Family, the most-viewed children’s channel in Canada, as well as Disney XD, Disney Junior (English-language channel), and Disney Junior (French-language channel) from Bell Media for approximately $170 million in cash. The purchase price is expected to be financed with an expanded underwritten credit facility and with cash on hand. The transaction is expected to close in 2014 pending approval by the Competition Bureau and the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

“The acquisition of these high-quality Canadian channels represents an exciting new addition to DHX, one that complements and enhances all areas of our business and positions us for our next stage of growth,” said Michael Donovan, CEO of DHX Media, in a statement.

CSS Combines Divisions

CSS Industries, Inc., announced that, effective immediately, it has combined the operations of all of its operating businesses, which includes its C.R. Gibson, LLC; Berwick Offray, LLC; and Paper Magic Group, Inc.

“The combination of the operations of all of our operating businesses is an important milestone in CSS’ history,” said Christopher J. Munyan, CSS’ president and CEO, who also leads the combined operating businesses. “In March 2012 we combined the operations of our Berwick and Paper Magic businesses. Based in part on our experience from such combination, we believe that today’s action will better position CSS for long-term growth, and that our stockholders and our customers will benefit from more efficient operations.”

Laurie Gilner, who served as CRG’s president immediately prior to the action has left the organization to pursue other opportunities.