Harry Jacobs, HomeGoods, Buyer

The July 23 issue of HOMEWORLD BUSINESS® features the 19th annual Impact Merchants special report. Housewares suppliers, representing the categories that HomeWorld covers, once again were asked to nominate buyers and merchandisers believed to have made a significant impact during the past year.

The selection of the 19 Impact Merchant winners is not intended as a definitive list of the best merchants in housewares retailing. Votes went to several more merchandisers than those featured. This year’s honorees represent buyers in given categories that received the majority of votes by vendors polled.

Voters were asked to give added weight to merchandising creativity, trend and marketing astuteness, attention to detail, openness to risk, flexibility, relationship building and the ability to deliver a profitable program for both the vendors and retailer while providing value to consumers. One thing this year’s Impact Merchants share is a vote of respect by their vendors. In today’s unpredictable retail environment, that vote really counts.

Harry Jacobs, HomeGoods, Buyer

In an era when retailers are relying more on metrics and less on the experience and savvy of their merchandising teams, HomeGoods’ Harry Jacobs continues to enjoy success by using his knowledge of the housewares industry to meet the needs of his customers.

For the second consecutive year, housewares suppliers nominated Jacobs as a HomeWorld Impact Merchant. Perhaps fittingly, Jacobs’ “old-school” approach to retailing is one that is not only lauded by vendors, but a style that also fits HomeGoods as the retailer focuses its selling efforts on brick-and-mortar stores.

Jacobs, who joined TJX in 1992 after a 20-year career with Jordan Marsh, brings a wealth of experience to each meeting with his product suppliers. Those same suppliers also talk about his continual push to learn and understand the features and benefits of new products.

In recent years, HomeGoods along with its sister brands Marshalls and TJ Maxx, have each played vital roles in the overall success of parent company TJX. While other retailers have been challenged by the growth of online retailers and more consumers shopping for home products online, HomeGoods has kept customers coming through its doors by offering an assortment of brand-name products at aggressive pricepoints.

In addition, the treasure hunt feel of the store and continual flow of new merchandise also serves to keep shoppers coming back to the store to look for products they need while also impulsively buying new housewares and furnishings for their home.

2018 HomeWorld Business Impact Merchants (click on name for profile):