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Hudson's Bay is Splitting Physical Stores From Its Online Marketplace

Hudson's Bay is Splitting Physical Stores From Its Online Marketplace

By Ambia Staley

Hudson's Bay Co. announced on August 12 that it is separating its physical department stores from its online marketplace to create two separate businesses and leadership structures.

The 86 brick-and-mortar stores will continue to operate as Hudson's Bay, while the e-commerce business will operate as The Bay.

HBC's executive chairman and CEO says dividing stores and e-commerce enables each business to make "unencumbered strategic investments."

Earlier this year, the retailer expanded its online marketplace and in April, it opened its website to third-party sellers which added thousands of new brands and products to their online assortment.

Wayne Drummond, president of Hudson's Bay says that the physical department stores will become "discovery destinations" and offer high-touch services that many others cannot.

HBC says that returns, exchanges, rewards points, and credit cards will continue to be accepted both in-store at Hudson's Bay, and online at The Bay.

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    • I think this company is going backward. While other companies use its online presence to promote their brand and blur the lines between online and the physical store. They are doing the reverse by splitting it up and even giving them different names as well. It may just create confusion and even weaken the brand further. This latest move just shows Mr. Baker (the American owner) is more of a real estate person than a retail person. Hope it doesn't end up like Sears someday.
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    • Does this news mean I won't see too many "unfortunately, this item is not in stock within 100 km of your location" messages? Some brand lines seem to never show as being in stock in stores west of Toronto in Ontario.

      Will pick-up in store still be an option? Will shipping costs change? etc.

      The website has been useful during store closures. I have noticed this summer some clothing items in kids/baby appear as not in stock on website, yet I can go to Hamilton or Mapleview stores and find things on the clearance racks.

      Of the online third party vendors-two children's clothing ones have interesting and fun offerings. It is tedious looking at the fine print for terms of sale/return per vendor. I'd like to see physical mailing address/phone numbers provided for each third party vendor selling via The Bay. Lucky to see an e-mail address!
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