EDITORIAL: Who Will Win?
An item in last week's Wall Street Journal said consumers want choices on how they get the goods, too, because home delivery isn't always convenient. That's another plus in the traditional companies' column. Meanwhile, CDW Computer Centers saw its stock price soar last month because of a strong first quarter. Analyst David Manthey attributed the high earnings to the company's excellent customer service levels in its 20 years of business. Other catalogers didn't fare too poorly, and some saw increases as well, while Amazon.com, DoubleClick and other Internet stocks took quite a beating.
Why the shakeout now? Wall Street and venture capitalists are finally saying enough to financing companies that lose money year after year. But how long will they find true happiness with the traditional catalogers and retailers?