business news in context, analysis with attitude

Interesting piece in the Detroit News about the deliberations going on at Kmart over whether to keep Martha Stewart now that she's been convicted on charges related to inside trading.

The problem? While her name and reputation no longer are sterling, "Martha Stewart Everyday products…account for roughly $1 billion, or 5 percent" of Kmart's estimated $24 billion in annual sales.

"Martha Stewart has been associated in some way with Kmart since 1987," the paper reports, but the fact that she stood by Kmart during its bankruptcy will have little or no impact. The Kmart "that went into bankruptcy proceedings in 2002 and the executives who took it there are gone. So are the directors and anyone who can claim credit for, or allegiance to, Martha Stewart.

"She is, in short, someone else's deal.'

And that probably doesn’t bode well for her.
KC's View:
Kmart may actually be an unaccustomed position of strength on this one. Look for the company to negotiate a better deal with Stewart…and if that fails, bailing out.