Macy’s Wednesday says it’s phasing out its Donald Trump line of clothing and accessories. Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants being drug dealers and rapists are, the company says, “inconsistent with Macy’s values.”
Still, the split comes with costs.
“There are orders being made,” says Matt Delzell of the Marketing Arm agency. “There’s current inventory in the stores. The shelf space, all of those things need to be replaced. That takes time. That takes money.”
Still, the costs are far lower than the price of staying with Trump.
And Macy’s likely built in an out long ago. Ever since O.J. Simpson’s brand went toxic for Hertz, companies have planned for these debacles.
“Companies routinely have clauses that say if there’s anything that is inconsistent with the morals or image of the organization, they have a right to remove a line or terminate a relationship,” says marketing professor Larry Chiagouris of the Lubin School of Business at Pace University in New York.
How costly is this split? The Trump line is not vital to Macy’s; it’s not Ralph Lauren or Tommy Hilfiger, analysts say.
“If I may call him the Don,” says analyst Paul Swinand at Morningstar, “he’s a little bit old at this point. I would say his shelf life is getting a little limited.”
In fact, several analysts think Macy’s may have already wanted to dump Trump. He’s now running for president, and a high negative rating doesn’t sell many paisley ties.
It’s not clear how quickly the Trump line will disappear from Macy’s. The Donald J. Trump money-sign cufflinks were still available at $45 each.
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