Good Week/Bad Week in Branding

The big-box retail landscape continues to be a ripe source of brand ups and downs.

Good Week: JCPenney – Bucking a downward trend that’s slapped Kohl’s, Macy’s, Sears and others hard, the venerable bargain chain – once on death’s doorstep itself – posted impressive Q$ same-store gains and saw its stock rise 50% to a two-year high.

Bad Week: Lumber Liquidators – After a lousy Q4 (sales down 17%), the discount flooring giant gets nailed again when stocks plummet on reports that certain of its Chinese-made laminates contain dangerous levels of formaldehyde. New tagline: "Flooring That Really Lasts"

Worse Week: Sports Authority – The no-frills sporting-goods retailer files for bankruptcy protection and announces the closing of 140 stores. If you thought it was hard to find what you were looking for before, try sauntering into the zombie apocalypse that will be the going-out-of-business sale. #deadmanrunning