FAC Acquisitions, which bought defunct general merchandise catalog Fingerhut from Federated Department Stores in July, got Fingerhut back in the mail just in time for the holidays. At press time the catalog was scheduled to drop on Nov. 9.
Spokesperson Mary Pernula says that the new Fingerhut book will offer a merchandise mix similar to that of its previous incarnation, selling everything from housewares to consumer electronics to apparel. The 216-page catalog mailed to an undisclosed number of previous Fingerhut customers, who are mostly from lower-middle-class households, and it offers easy-payment, interest-bearing credit terms similar to those Fingerhut was known for. Orders will be fulfilled from Fingerhut’s St. Cloud, MN, distribution center as well as from its Minnetonka, MN, headquarters.
The new owner rushed to get the book back in the mail. “To get the catalog out in time for the holiday season, we had to work very quickly,” Pernula says. “Beyond this mailing, we’ll have to wait and see what happens, what our response is, and how it goes. We’re cautiously optimistic, but it’s hard to know, since the catalog has been idle for a year.” The last Fingerhut catalog mailed in late January 2002.
The company is in discussions with the Union of Needletrades, Industrial, and Textile Employees (UNITE), which had represented Fingerhut workers, to fill distribution center jobs in St. Cloud. The company plans to hire up to 60 employees during the next month. So far, “many positions” have been filled, although the company won’t give specific figures.