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Reader's Choice 2008

You headed to the polls this year and made you voices heard.

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INDUSTRY SHOCK WAVE

The economy dealt a heavy blow to the footwear industry this year, and several major players suffered as a result, including Mervyns, Shoe Pavilion and NexCen Brands. But the most surprising company failure, according to 26 percent of FN readers, was the 175-store Steve & Barry’s. Though it won Best Collaboration in last year’s Reader’s Choice survey for its deal with Sarah Jessica Parker, the company announced last month it would shutter all its stores. Readers had this to say about it:

“From the outside, it looked like a business model perfectly aligned with the conditions in the competitive, consumer and economic environments.”

“They seemed to have a decent price point and great PR from Sarah Jessica Parker’s Bitten line.”

“One week, I read about their success in the New York Times, and not more than a month later, they were in bankruptcy. It happened fast.”

“[It was surprising] because the company was acquired and I thought they would give reorganization a try.”

“It’s sad that overexpansion and probably too expensive licensing deals led to its demise.”

WHITE HOUSE AGENDA

1. Fix the economy
2. Make changes to health care
3. Enact new energy policy
4. Reduce taxes
5. Pass education initiatives

A month from now, the country will welcome a new president, and his administration faces several important issues, from the economy and health care to energy and education. For FN readers, the economy was the No. 1 task for President-elect Obama to work on right away.
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