- A retailer's list of preferred vendors, often further described by a specific merchandise classification. As department store business began to decrease in the early 1990s due to "com-moditization," department store retailers became increasingly cautious about taking risks. Key manufacturers such as Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Ellen Tracy, and other large companies like them, invested in computer software that could interface with that of the major department stores. This made it easy for both the retailer and the vendor to track sales. If a style wasn't selling or needed to be reordered, the manufacturer would not have to wait for the buyer's report to find out, but could react appropriately by sending replenishing stock or taking merchandise off the selling floor. This made the buyer's job easier and store operations more efficient.
Historical Dictionary of the Fashion Industry. Francesca Sterlacci and Joanne Arbuckle.
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