Macy’s Inc. is making a bold move in retail innovation, announcing today that it has acquired New York City-based concept shop Story in a push toward experiential retail.
The department store giant also named Rachel Shechtman, Story’s CEO and founder, as brand experience officer, reporting directly to Macy’s president Hal Lawton. In the role, Shechtman will be responsible for in-store customer experiences — the centerpiece that has allowed the Manhattan boutique to thrive in today’s digital world.
“Rachel is a unique and innovative voice in retail, and we are thrilled to have the Story team join the Macy’s family, ” CEO and chairman Jeff Gennette said. “Bringing Rachel’s perspective to the table will help create more enriched and engaging in-store experiences and brand activations.”
Story bases its retail model on the viewpoint of a magazine but changes like a gallery and sells things like a store. Every four to eight weeks, the space undergoes an inventory and interior design overhaul to highlight a new theme. (For example, during its “Love Story” motif, the shop sold scented candles, lingerie and heart-shaped goods among other similar-themed merchandise.) According to Macy’s, Story has “a heightened focus on experience, engagement and collaboration or brand partnerships.”
“It’s exciting to have a national stage to leverage Story’s learnings and relationships to create impact at scale,” Shechtman said. “I’m energized by the opportunity to further build new customer experiences across the Macy’s portfolio, while also continuing to pursue new business models and brand partnerships.”
Story will continue to operate as usual at its Chelsea location. Chief operating officer Jenny Shechtman will assume the role of vice president of operations under Macy’s ownership.