Sandy fallout for retailers depends on holiday sales

For shoe designer Sam Edelman, storm is a triple-threat
November 01, 2012 04:00PM

Retailers are in the process of recovering from Hurricane Sandy, with many stores reopening and others remaining dark. The storm’s impact on business might not have a severe effect on upcoming holiday sales, but consumers with damaged properties could direct their holiday shopping dollars into storm clean-up instead, retail experts told Crain’s.

“They might not be spending on holiday gifts in November,” Jack Kleinhenz, chief economist at the National Retail Federation, told Crain’s. “They might be spending instead on buckets and wood.”

Hurricane Sandy’s rough weather has hit shoe designer Sam Edelman and his real estate particularly hard. Monday’s storm not only impacted his new Soho flagship, but also his corporate office in Midtown and his Connecticut home.

Edelman founded his eponymous shoe brand eight years ago; it is now owned by Brown Shoe Co. His 2,500-square-foot flagship – his first permanent store – opened last weekend at 109 Spring Street, but on Sunday it had to be closed. As of yesterday, the store had not reopened. Though Edelman cleared the merchandise from the sales floor, he told Crain’s that all he can do is hope the goods remain safe from floodwater.

At the same time, the One57 partial crane collapse occurred across the street from Edelman’s corporate office space located at 130 West 57th Street. The office has stayed closed all week, meaning he has to work from his Connecticut home, which still does not have an Internet connection or television. All in all, it’s a Sandy triple whammy. [Crain’s]Zachary Kussin