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LAST MINUTE BUSINESS PUSHES CATALOGS TO NEW SALES RECORDS

 EVANSTON, Ill., Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- When they turned the key in the lock on their warehouses at midnight on Dec. 24 most of the people in the catalog business according to leading catalog consultant, Maxwell Sroge, had a lot to be thankful for -- increases in sales of over 20 percent as compared to Christmas 1992 were not uncommon.
 "Again the catalog business grew at more than double the rate of over the counter retailing," said Sroge, "and again the last minute rush almost swamped their ability to fill orders," he added.
 "To give you some idea as to the phone load," said consultant Sroge, Williams-Sonoma, the cooks catalog, received 50,706 calls from viewers two-days after they were mentioned on Oprah Winfrey's show." As for the entire catalog business Maxwell Sroge estimates that during the month of December they received a whopping 140 million telephone calls to order merchandise.
 The following summary of sales catalog results for the Christmas period was gathered by the staff of Maxwell Sroge Company, Evanston- based catalog consultants.
 Orvis reported up 25%
 Lillian Vernon 3rd qtr. ended 11/27 up 14.5%
 Spiegels reported up 20%
 Penney's reported up 20%
 Lands' End reported 8 wks. ended 12/24 up 26%
 L.L. Bean reported up 20%
 Talbots stores and catalogs reported Dec. up 44%
 Miles Kimball reported up 33%
 "Why are catalogs doing so much better?" Sroge replied, "It's simple ... Value, Selection, Service, Convenience. Four simple powerful words. The catalogers are giving more for the money...they're offering broader selections ... their sales people care about the customer and it's fast and easy to do business with them."
 -0- 1/11/94
 /CONTACT: Maxwell Sroge of Maxwell Sroge Company, 708-866-1890 or fax, 708-866-1899/


CO: Maxwell Sroge Company, Inc. ST: Illinois IN: REA SU: ECO

LG-PS -- NY026 -- 0953 01/11/94 11:21 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 11, 1994
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