Following a tweet from President Donald Trump blasting Nordstrom for cutting his daughter’s apparel line, Charlotte-based Belk says it will keep selling Ivanka Trump’s merchandise at its 22 flagship stores, though the brand is no longer available on its website.
Days after Trump’s line disappeared from the websites of Belk and other retailers, the company issued a statement thanking customers who had expressed their views about the brand. Several who reached out to the Observer this week voiced frustration about the move, which they saw as politically motivated.
“We welcome and pay close attention to feedback from our customers. We continually review our assortment and the performance of the brands we carry. We make adjustments as part of our normal course of business operations,” the retailer said in a statement posted Wednesday.
“In this regard, we are no longer carrying Ivanka Trump branded merchandise on our website, but are continuing to offer the brand at our flagship stores.”
Belk operates 22 flagship stores, including the one at SouthPark mall.
A store is considered a flagship location if it is about 160,000 square feet or larger, has a product assortment that reflects “the best of Belk,” conveys the company’s “Modern. Southern. Style” slogan and meets minimum volume requirements, the retailer has said.
At Belk in SouthPark this week, an employee said Trump’s dresses “sell fantastically.”
Following the disappearance of Trump merchandise from Belk’s website, a shopper named Anna May Smith said she intends to “cut up” her Belk credit card. “Macy’s too if they get political instead of focus(ed) on consumer,” she wrote in an email to the Observer.
Seattle-based Nordstrom last week announced plans to cut Trump’s brand, citing sluggish sales. Others including Neiman Marcus soon followed suit.
The retailers’ moves come amid growing pressure from an activist campaign called #GrabYourWallet, the retail site Racked first reported. Shannon Coulter, the campaign’s organizer, has implored a slew of other retailers, including Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s and Dillard’s, to boycott companies affiliated with the Trumps.