As many people may remember the Sharper Image went out of business almost 2 years ago and closed many of their stores as a result. This was partially because of the fact that they were an extremely niche sort of retailer and they sold a lot of stuff that people considered to be expendable when it really came down to things. And when the economy tanked, so did their sales and they went under. Deep under.
Now, they’re back. But this is not the same company or the same management. What has actually happened is that Homedics [the guys who make back massagers and foot massagers] purchased the Sharper Image IP [intellectual property] and kept the brand name. The biggest reason being, everyone knows the sharper image for their electronics. I spoke with Doug Petty, the Sr. VP of Sales, and he explained to me that they would not be re-opening stores in the same manner that The Sharper Image used to exist. But rather that they are going to sell these products in the very places where The Sharper Image originally became successful using the store within a store model. Meaning that they will have a large selection of their products within major chain stores like Macy’s and Bed Bath and Beyond. The kinds of stores that will attract buyers of such products.
The interesting thing is, these guys are not the only ones carrying the Sharper Image name. There is also another company operating under the Sharper Image as well, but they actually own the original domain which is thesharperimage.com. The site of the guys that I spoke with is siproducts.com which clearly indicates the need to be different from the other company even though they use the same name. So, The Sharper Image has actually been split up into two different companies with two different owners which focus on two entirely different market segments… or so they say. We look forward to seeing more home gadgets from these guys that make our lives easier.