Mark Group to Close Charles Keath Catalog

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The new year will mark the end of the Charles Keath catalog as The Mark Group decided last week to discontinue the book at the end of January.

The company said it would focus on its Boston Proper catalog.

Patrick Theimer, senior director of finance for The Mark Group, Boca Raton. FL, which is the holding company for Charles Keath and Boston Proper, said Boston Proper "shows a more promising growth strategy" for the company.

"We plan to do a holiday catalog that will be out at the end of September," he said. "Then through November and throughout the rest of the year we will have Christmas/sale and clearance catalogs. The circulation will focus more on the 12-month-buyer with a reduction in prospecting on these books."

Charles Keath offered primarily seasonal hard goods. Its target was older, affluent customers, primarily female.

Boston Proper offers high-end fashions for affluent women in their early 30s to late 40s.

The most recent Charles Keath book, a vacation catalog, went out toward the end of June with a page count of 68.

"We plan to accelerate the growth of our direct channels, to build on the successful launch of the Boston Proper Sport catalog and ultimately to add retail stores," The Mark Group CEO Michael Tiernan said in a statement.

The company has two outlet stores.

First quarter Boston Proper revenues were up 30 percent and its 12-month buyer file has increased by 20 percent since last year.

The Charles Keath assets, including its mailing list and name, will be sold.


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