Harry Rosen now offering online shopping



    Launches e-commerce site to further service clients' needs

    TORONTO, May 14 /CNW/ - Harry Rosen Inc. announced today that it will now
be selling merchandise online at its website www.harryrosen.com. The launch of
the re-designed site - which will complement the 15 stores nationwide that
occupy nearly 40% of the better-end menswear market in Canada - is part of a
long-term strategy to provide clients with the highest level of customer
service possible, and to continue to attract younger clients to the brand's
stable of world-class designers.
    "The challenge facing all retailers in today's climate is to remain
relevant and top-of-mind with both your current and future clients," states
CEO and Chairman Larry Rosen. "When we look at the next generation of clients
- even when I look at my own teenaged sons - we can see that we need to sell
our merchandise online to introduce them to our brand and get them into our
stores, where we can develop a personal relationship with them."
    Considered a separate revenue stream for Harry Rosen Inc., the site has
been in the works for two years. Harry Rosen consulted with the J.C. Williams
Group when building the strategy and the research presented showed that online
shopping is poised for continued growth in the coming years. In Canada in
2008, 1 out of 5 customers shopped for an apparel item online, and online
shopping grew overall by 61% between 2005 and 2007.
    "It's clear that in today's economy, multi-channel retailing is the
future for leading retailers and adding an online component is a natural
addition to the superior in store shopping experience at Harry Rosen,"
maintains Jim Okamura, Senior Partner of J.C. Williams Group. "While the
current retailing climate is challenging, it's interesting to note that even
when same store sales decline, online sales continue to go up," he adds,
pointing to notable U.S. retailers such as Macy's and The Gap. In 2008, Macy's
online sales were up 28%, where overall sales were down 7.7%. In 2008, The
Gap's online sales accounted for 7.1% of sales, up from 5.7% in 2007.
    Acknowledging that the e-commerce model is entirely different from the in
store model, Rosen and his seasoned Executive Committee put a dedicated team
in place to support the business, lead by Director of E-Commerce Glen
Glisinski, an e-commerce buyer and a customer service team that will staff the
in-house call centre.
    "Our clients wanted the option of buying online occasionally - which was
confirmed when we offered gift cards online during the holiday season in 2008
- so we created the site in an effort to continue to offer them the best
shopping experience possible, from the convenience of their own home," says
Rosen. "But it wasn't created overnight. We've learned from past experiences
that it takes time to build a business model that will succeed and one that
would be in keeping with our brand and relationship-based focus. As with
everything we do, we want our clients to receive the best service whether they
come into our store or shop with us online."
    To facilitate the online shopping process, the site offers users many
unique features, including the ability to communicate directly with a sales
associate in a specific store from the site; to make in-person appointments;
to add merchandise to a 'wish list' that can be shared with other people; and
most notably, to receive recommendations from sales associates based on past
purchases and history. Online pricing and policies will be the same as they
are for in-store purchases. As an introductory offer during the month of May,
free standard shipping will apply to all orders.
    Currently only offering shipping to Canadian addresses, the site will not
sell all merchandise available in a Harry Rosen store. Over 300 items will be
available this season from a variety of brands such as Canali, Hugo BOSS and
Lacoste and will include sportswear, knits, dress shirts, accessories, shoes
and outerwear, with more merchandise being added over time. Tailored clothing
such as suits, sports jackets and trousers - the cornerstone of a professional
wardrobe that Harry Rosen built its business on - will not be available due to
the challenges involved with proper fitting and expert tailoring.
    The site will be supported via extensive marketing efforts that will
include a mix of traditional channels and online advertising including banner
ads, search engine marketing and social media. The site was designed by Grip
Limited of Toronto. iCongo, Inc., a Montreal-based company, was selected as
the key developer and technology provider for the new e-commerce site of Harry
Rosen Inc.
    Harry Rosen's current corporate website will be included in the new
e-commerce site. Harrymagazine.ca, the online home of Harry Magazine, will
also be found via a link within www.harryrosen.com. As well, the recent blog
launched by Harry Rosen - The New Confidence
(http://thenewconfidence.squarespace.com) - will be linked to the site and
will continue to offer videos, interviews and tips about menswear dressing and
current promotions.

    About Harry Rosen Inc.

    Harry Rosen Inc., Canada's leading quality men's wear retailer, is
celebrating its 55th year in business in 2009. Founded in 1954 by the man
whose name the chain still bears, Harry Rosen Inc. has grown from a single
500-square-foot store in Toronto to become a powerhouse in Canadian retailing
with 15 stores across the country, accounting for 40 percent of the Canadian
market in high-end men's wear. Harry Rosen stores offer extensive collections
of the world's finest men's wear labels including Tom Ford, Brunello
Cucinelli, Dolce & Gabbana, Etro, Armani Collezioni, Brioni, Canali,
Ermenegildo Zegna, Versace, BOSS Hugo Boss, Prada, Cole Haan, Salvatore
Ferragamo, Loro Piana, Coppley, Corneliani and J.P. Tilford by Samuelsohn.





For further information:

For further information: or photographs, please contact: Shauna Cook, PR
and Special Events Manager, Harry Rosen Inc., (416) 935-9226,
scook@harryrosen.com

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Harry Rosen Inc.

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