The July 17 issue of HOMEWORLD BUSINESS® features the 18th 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 20 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.
Kanani McNerthney, Kroger/Fred Meyer, Tabletop Buyer
Kanani McNerthney, an Impact Merchant in the tabletop category, has been praised by the vendor community for her clear vision, decision-making and communication skills. In her current role, she is responsible for managing dinnerware, drinkware, flatware, and table and kitchen linens.
She began her career at the Kroger Co. in 2007 starting in the Fred Meyer division as an advertising coordinator. In 2008, she joined the management training program and became a Fred Meyer assistant buyer in the home fashion bath department. She spent three years as an assistant buyer and then moved into stationery and toys as the assistant planner.
In 2012, McNerthney returned to the home fashion bath department as the division’s buyer. After 18 months in the bath department, she was promoted to the role of home décor enterprise buyer for the Kroger Co., where she was responsible for managing floor coverings, décor pillows, throw blankets and window coverings. McNerthney currently resides at the housewares tabletop office as the Kroger Co. enterprise buyer.
“After several changes in buyers, Kanani came into the role with buying experience, interest in learning more about our product and an open mind,” said one vendor.
“Over the last two years, she has impressed me with her clear vision, astute knowledge of the section, and clear decision-making,” the vendor added.
Another vendor said, “She has strong merchandising skills and a great eye for spotting trends. She buys with conviction and challenges vendors to take things to the next level.”
2017 HomeWorld Business Impact Merchants (click on name for profile):
- Jennifer Cotreau, Wayfair
- Liz Anderson, Sam’s Club
- Jason Kloster, Walmart
- Tamara Rosenkranz, Williams Sonoma
- Melissa Cameron, Tuesday Morning
- Alison Alness-Richmond, Target
- Dan Willman, Best Buy
- Carol Nakauchi, Dollar General
- Natalia Goncalves, BrandsMart
- Jason Perez, Costco
- Tracy Godshall, Bed Bath & Beyond
- Kanani McNerthney, Kroger/Fred Meyer
- Jason Rogers, Walmart
- Karen & Brad Hughes, Artichoke
- Kim Kimbriel, The Container Store
- Alison Fosbenner, Lowe’s
- Harry Jacobs, HomeGoods
- Amy Eshuys, Christmas Tree Shops
- Sean Le Deit, Houzz
- Brad Wiesner, Bed Bath & Beyond