January 22, 2002, 12:00 AM

Kmart says the BlueLight will still shine online

Kmart Corp.’s Chapter 11 reorganization is not likely to affect BlueLight.com operations, the company says. But observers expect some changes.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

 

In the wake of a Chapter 11 reorganization filing by parent company Kmart Corp., Bluelight.com, Kmart’s e-commerce company, says it’s business as usual. "We don’t foresee any lapse in service for our e-commerce or ISP customers," says a Bluelight.com spokesman. "Kmart has said we are a crucial element in their retail strategy, not just today but moving forward. As Kmart repositions itself, it will make sense to take a more aggressive role, especially as we start to target moms shopping online."

Although market observers consider targeting women online to be a positive step, it remains to be seen how Bluelight.com will fit into Kmart’s multi-channel plan. "BlueLight was already being folded back into Kmart so it will probably continue," says Duif Calvin, vice president in global retail at Scient Inc. But she says Kmart’s inability to combine its three brands--Kmart, Bluelight and the Martha Stewart Everyday line of products--has made it difficult for the company to identify with a shopping audience in all channels. "The customer experience was too confusing," she says. "I think Kmart will change BlueLight.com to Kmart.com. Retailers are realizing they don¹t need a new brand to get new customers online."

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