Coronavirus Impact on Fall, Christmas and Licensed Sports Product Shipments
Coronavirus Resources for Retailers from the National Retail Federation
Coronavirus Emergency Small Business Guide and Checklist from the US Chamber of Commerce - PDF download
April 1, 2020
Good afternoon, and I hope you, your family, and your employees are well.
I’m writing today about efforts Evergreen is putting in place over the next few weeks to better support you through this pandemic. We value your partnership, and we’ve constructed an initial plan to assist you how we can over the next 90 days. Like many of you, we’re still processing the events of the last few weeks and now are finding our best path for forging ahead. We hope these efforts will be helpful to you.
Open Invoices & Open Orders – In all of my discussions with retailers since the onset of this pandemic, open invoices and orders have been at the forefront. Regardless of what role your organization plays in our industry, the disruption caused by COVID-19 has everyone reviewing their future cashflows. We’re also seeing that the impact can vary greatly, depending on your locality and class of retail, so while we initially tried to craft a broad policy, we’re refocusing our responses to be based on individual conversations around specific concerns. If you have questions about either open orders or open invoices, please speak with your Territory Manager, Customer Service, or Accounting.
Education & Support – We’re building a series of educational resources (live webcasts) specifically for retailers over the next few weeks.
- "Enhancing Your Digital Efforts" – All retailers, including those who have historically focused only on their physical retail space, can use digital efforts to drive additional transactions. Digital tools are already available for use, such as Evergreen On-Demand (a drop-ship application for retailers that contains over 4,000 items, allowing products to ship directly to end consumers), and there are multiple ecommerce platforms to consider, such as Facebook Marketplace and Shopify. After this presentation, members of our marketing team will be available to connect with retailers about specific questions, ideas needing further clarification, or individualized strategies for moving forward.
- "Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201)" – Joe Bower, our Director of Human Resources, will share the contents of this bill and what it means for employees and organizations. We know many of our partner retailers don’t have full-time HR professionals on staff, so we’re making ours available to you during this session to answer any questions you may have.
- "Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act" – The recent legislation has potential benefits for many retailers impacted by COVID-19, but there are still many specifics needing clarification. Working with our partners in the industry, we will review the details of this legislation and how your organization can benefit from it. Begin there, and together we will continue this conversation.
Territory Manager Support – We’ve been working with our Territory Managers to better educate them on the digital tools available as we transition into a temporary, remote-work environment. They have the answers to many of the basic questions retailers might have concerning their accounts. Our goal is to enable them to continue being what they always have been for many of you, the primary point of contact and support for Evergreen.
Planning for the Future – While it has proven difficult to plan for the future at times over the last few weeks, we’re doing exactly that. Our product development team will deliver the 2021 Spring & Summer Catalogs on June 1st. We’re close to finishing a brand new 15,000-square-foot corporate showroom, available to retailers, this summer, and we will unveil an entirely new B2B website in June. As one of our Territory Managers stated last week, “The comeback is always stronger than the setback,” and we’re preparing for that while remaining dedicated to addressing the immediate needs of our retailers.
Please let me know any additional suggestions for how we can better support retailers through these difficult times. Feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions or concerns. We remain here for you in whatever capacity we can be.
Thank you, and take care,
- John Toler, President & CEO
March 20, 2020
Dear Evergreen Retail Partners,
Following is a review of the steps that we are taking in response to the current global health crisis. These steps have been taken in response to the advice we are receiving from our Local, State, and Federal officials, but mostly because of the responsibility that each of us feels to keep our Evergreen Employees, our Retail Partners, and our community as safe and healthy as possible.
- At each of our Company offices, warehouses, and showrooms, we have made arrangements, wherever possible, to enable and equip our employees to work from their homes.
- Where certain functions are not able to be performed offsite, such as those of our Distribution and Customer Service teams, we have implemented additional precautions to ensure we remain staffed and functional.
- Our offshore factories are back to full production. Other than what has been previously communicated, we expect no additional delays in product delivery through the balance of the year. We are receiving and processing containers of fresh merchandise daily.
- Our Leadership Team is monitoring the situation, adjusting resources to quickly respond, removing barriers to execution, and actively engaging with our teams to ensure we find the right balance between our work and the safety of those around us.
- As the circumstances of each person and geographic region are different, we’ve asked our Field Sales team to shift the way they engage with our customers and utilize our various technical capabilities. Each is continuing to help customers plan for their current and future needs through virtual presentations. They are equipped to utilize various platforms such as Face Time, Skype, Zoom, and our Online Resource Center. Please reach out to them for details and/or to schedule a virtual appointment.
It is our hope that the steps outlined above will allow us to fulfill our commitments to the health and well-being of our Employees, our Retail Partners, and the communities in which we each live and work, while doing all that we can to continue as a valued partner for you.
If you have any concerns or comments, please feel free to reach to reach out to me at email@example.com. Our team will be happy to answer whatever questions you may have.
Thank you for your continuing partnership.
- John Toler
February 28, 2020
As many of you are now aware, the Coronavirus will influence our industry’s product supply chains based in China. As more information surfaces daily, I want to take this opportunity to update you on the impact the virus will have on Evergreen.
Over the last three weeks we have been working with our sourcing office in Ningbo, China to better assess the effects of the Coronavirus— more specifically, its influence on the shipping dates of our upcoming seasonal and licensed sports products.
As there is a lot to comprehend, the information below is broken into parts to hopefully make it easier to process. If you have an open order that is affected by one of the changes, you will be contacted via email and your Territory Manager will be able to walk you through the impact.
Licensed Sports Products:
In October 2019 we released over 4,000 Licensed Sports Products with a scheduled ship date of June 2020. We started placing production orders with our factories for these goods in November & December of 2019. A portion of these items are already on the way to Richmond. Due to the timing of this early release, our sourcing office is confident that our Licensed Sports products will leave China on schedule. We don’t expect any delays here and will start shipping retailer orders in June.
Seasonal Garden Products:
In December 2019 we released 430 products related to Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. These items were released with an expected start ship date of August 1st, 2020. Five of these items will now be delayed, and we expect the remaining 425 products to ship on time. The impacted products can be found here. If you have an open order with these items, we will remove them from your original order and create a new order with a ship date of September 15th. The terms associated with your original order will remain the same.
Seasonal Decorative Flag:
In December 2019 we released over 1,000 decorative flags, mats, and door décor related to Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. These items were released with an expected start ship date of June 1st, 2020. We expect to deliver these goods as planned and see no delays here.
Seasonal Indoor Décor:
In December 2019 we released over 1,000 decorative indoor items related to Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas under the Cypress Home brand. These items were released with an expected start ship date of August 1st, 2020. Of the 1,000 items, we have identified 54 that will be impacted. Six of these SKUs are Fall or Halloween designs, and we understand a September delivery date will be too late for many retailers. Therefore, we will cancel production on these items, and they will be removed from all open orders. Those products can be found here. Forty-eight additional SKUs will be delayed, with a new expected ship date of September 15th. Those items can be found here. As with the impacted seasonal garden products, we will remove the affected items from open orders and generate a new order with a ship date of September 15th. The terms associated with your original order will remain the same.
Plow & Hearth Living Seasonal Release:
In December 2019 we released 107 new seasonal Plow & Hearth Living products. These items were released with an expected start ship date of July 15th. This release has a high concentration of impacted items. As a result, we have decided to move the entire release to an August 15th ship date. Any current orders for the Plow & Hearth Living Seasonal release with a ship date before August 15th will be moved to a start ship date of August 15th. The impacted products can be found here.
In summary, of the approximately 6,500 products that were released since October 2019 with scheduled ship dates from June to August, 175 will now be delayed due to the Coronavirus outbreak and the impacts it has had on our supply chain. If you need Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas goods for At Once, we have thousands in-stock and ready to ship.
Naturally, things can change. If they do, we will be sure to update you. All of our order entry tools have been updated to reflect these new ship dates.
We understand how important the retail of seasonal goods is for many of you and want to be as transparent as possible with the potential delays, while keeping a sense of urgency.
Please reach out to me directly if you have any concerns or questions.
Our thoughts and prayers are with those impacted by this in China and around the world.
- John Toler