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Ali Shops Blog

The clearance experience

July 13th, 2010
by Allison Kaplan

Sales are not Galleria’s style. The posh Edina, Minn. center doesn’t technically forbid discount racks, but garish sale signs are frowned upon. “It’s just not our customers’ favorite thing,” said Jill Noack, vice president and general manager of Galleria. “They don’t want to buy a dress and see it on sale the next week.” The center may be charmed (it consistently boasts an occupancy rate higher than just about any competitor in town and is home to Minnesota’s only Tiffany & Co. and Louis Vuitton stores), but that doesn’t mean everything sells at full price. So shops have gotten in the habit of outsourcing. Len Druskin has created a whole new business with its Len Druskin Outlet stores; others team up for off-site liquidation sales or sell to outlet retailers. Well, if you can’t beat the sales, Noack figured the center should try to stage its own – Galleria style. For the first time ever Thursday, July 15 to Saturday, July 17, Galleria will host the Galleria Clearance Experience with food sampling, product demos and, of course, lots and lots of discounts – as much as 80 percent off at some stores. Around 40 retailers are participating. If it’s a hit – and hard to believe it wouldn’t be – Noack says she could imagine doing this type of major blow-out twice a year. No more. And what happens to the sale merchandise that hasn’t sold by the end of the three-day “experience?” Noack hopes it will disappear – to charities, outlets – anywhere but her center. We’ll see.

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