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Target Ends Its ‘Take Charge Of Education’ Charitable Giving As Sales Fall


  • Brian Cornell has ended an 18-year long charitable program.
  • Sales continue to fall for Target in light of new initiatives and core category growth.
  • Target is finding its e-commerce growth slowing and its percentage of e-commerce sales falling year-over-year.

Show me what you got Target (NYSE:TGT)! That is likely what Target Corp. will have to do come its next earnings and sales report as the company missed revenue expectations and came in under its own guidance for Q1 2016. It’s important to note that Target’s 1 st quarter revenue results marked a 2 nd straight quarter of revenue declines. Will this trend continue into the 2 nd quarter of 2016 is anybody’s guess and likely why the stock may flounder a bit until the next reporting season.

Target has been much maligned for its policy adoption and implementation over the years and I can’t recall a time when it’s been quite as scrutinized as with its most recent bathroom policy. I discussed Target’s recent bathroom policy in an article titled “Target’s Inclusion/Bathroom Policy Might Find The Retailer Excluded By Customers“. Having said that there has been another policy decision that has gone under the radar when it comes to financial reporting media outlets. Investors may not have previously understood that Target decided to end its 18-year long Take Charge of Education charitable giving program.

Target’s Take Charge of Education program, through which the company donates 1 percent of RedCard holders’ purchase total to a school of their choice ended in May. Over the last 18 years, Target has distributed more than $432 million to more than 100,000 schools across the U.S. through the initiative. While the Take Charge of Education program was a two-pronged effort by Target to give back to local communities and inspire RedCard purchases, the company has reportedly stated that only 10% of RedCard holders enrolled in the program over the 18 year run. Amy Koo, an analyst with Kantar Retail offering the following regarding this policy decision by Target’s CEO Brian Cornell:“If they are stepping back from education, I think that’s a mistake,” she added, noting that a number of grocers and drugstore chains already focus on health and hunger in their charitable giving.”

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