executive decision

Mind the Gap: Big Changes Up Top as CMO Farbman Steps Aside

Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 5, 2014 10:53 AM

Gap’s fall “Dress Normal” campaign as sales of the brand fell for the quarter in which it was intended to lift sales. Now the executive who oversaw the effort is stepping aside.

Global CMO Seth Farbman is stepping down in January, when new Gap brand global president Jeff Kirwan assumes office, Ad Age reports.

Farbman is leaving as the company is going through a major executive shift at the top: Gap Inc. CEO Glenn Murphy will be also be exiting, to be replaced by Art Peck, currently president of growth, innovation and digital operations.

He isn’t the only marketing exec to exit in recent months, either.  Marcela Aguilar, Gap's senior global director-marketing communications, left in September to take over the role of director of global marketing communications at Apple.Continue reading...

sporting brands

Reebok and UFC "Train to Fight" With New Partnership

Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 4, 2014 11:01 AM

For consumers wondering what shoes and apparel to wear next time they are facing off against a jujitsu red belt, Reebok and Ultimate Fighting Championship have the answer. The pair have just joined forces for a six-year deal that gives the UFC its first uniform deal ever.

“This partnership not only further cements Reebok as the leading fitness brand in the industry," Matt O’Toole, president of Reebok, said in a statement. "It will also help us reach a wider audience and become the brand of choice for the more than 35 million consumers worldwide who use disciplines like boxing, kickboxing, and mixed martial arts to live a fit lifestyle."

In an unusual twist, UFC president Dana White told MMA Fighting that even though this deal is the biggest non-broadcast-related one that UFC has ever made, the actual organization “will not see a dime” of the money involved. White says the money will all go to the players, who will get a 20% cut of any apparel sold that has their name on it.Continue reading...


Nike Opens First Store for Women as Lululemon Readies First Men's Store

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 20, 2014 05:05 PM

Nike today opened its first women's-only store—in Newport Beach, Calif.—a week ahead of lululemon athletica opening its first men's-only store—on the opposite coast, in New York—on Black Friday.

The move makes sense given that Nike expects its women's business to grow to $7 billion annually by 2017, from about $5 billion currently.

Its second women’s-only store will follow quickly, opening on Nov. 29—not in the U.S. but in Shanghai, China, the only women's stores it has announced so far.Continue reading...

tech style

eBay Brings Digital Chic, Bespoke Big Data to Rebecca Minkoff's New Stores

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 12, 2014 03:06 PM

eBay is partnering with tech-savvy fashion brand Rebecca Minkoff to bring immersive digital technology to the designer's foray into brick-and-mortar stores.

The first of four high-tech boutiques will open on Saturday in New York's Soho area, followed by a San Francisco store (in the Pacific Heights neighborhood) that will open shortly thereafter and stores in Los Angeles (on Melrose Avenue) and Tokyo next year.

While the stores are permanent, eBay has signed on for a one-year (minimum) partnership to bring its e-commerce prowess to Minkoff's first stores, powering touch screen interactive displays and digital fitting rooms designed with her customers—omnichannel-savvy, sophisticated and fashion-forward shoppers—in mind.Continue reading...


Eddie Bauer Scales Manhattan With Pop-Up Shop, Twitter Vending Machine

Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 12, 2014 10:27 AM

Eddie Bauer may be known for selling down-filled and Gore-Tex protected clothes and gear you’d generally see on a hiking trail or ski slope, but the brand is tackling a new terrain: tracking and guiding customers who spend more time on city streets than in the great outdoors back to its brand.

Cue a just-opened pop-up shop on New York's Fifth Avenue, which will remain open through Feb. 14 before reopening as a permanent flagship location, according to a press release. The move will come as good news to local fans who've been without an Eddie Bauer store since 2007.

“We know we have a lot of customers in the area,” Eddie Bauer CEO Mike Egeck told Fortune, adding that Manhattan alone has “at least 20,000” customers who will welcome the chance to shop in person (vs. by catalog and website) and around 250,000 brand loyalists in New York as a whole.Continue reading...


Frenzy for Alexander Wang Proves H&M's Mastery of Co-Branding

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 6, 2014 06:02 PM

The day has finally arrived: Alexander Wang's collection for H&M is now in stores. Wang, creative director of Kering SA’s Balenciaga brand, is the first American to design a guest collection for H&M, and today's debut marks 10 years of designer collaborations for the world's second-biggest apparel retailer after Zara owner Inditex.

After an orchestrated series of sneak peeks—first on Instagram, followed by Rihanna at New York Fashion Week, and then a mention in Vogue Netherlands—as well as a striking video teaser (below) and a New York runway show—the collection has now hit 240 H&M stores worldwide and its network of websites, with select pieces also for sale on the official Alexander Wang website.

As we noted earlier, the collaboration not only crashed H&M's local websites worldwide, but instantly hit eBay, with items priced up to $2,000.Continue reading...

corporate citizenship

adidas Group Promotes Human Rights Standards for Factory Workers

Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 6, 2014 04:14 PM

The adidas Group is making strides in its goal of becoming a more responsive—and responsible—corporate citizen.

The German sportswear giant has released the results of a third party-conducted workplace ethics evaluation in a new report with a lengthy title: “Third Party Complaint Process for Breaches to the adidas Group Workplace Standards or Violations of International Human Rights Norms."

Outlining a series of first-of-its-kind processes for the company, the document opens with a bold statement: “The adidas Group is committed to operating as a sustainable business which is environmentally sound, respects human rights and ensures fair, safe and healthy working conditions across our global supply chain.” 

Though the company has had worker’s rights policies and complaint filing protocol in place for more than a decade, their grievance mechanisms haven't been successfully utilized, much to the detriment of the brand's cultural reputation. Now it's getting tougher on contact compliance, making contractors toe the line on treatment of workers and maintaining its corporate ethical standards.Continue reading...

brand collaborators

H&M x Alexander Wang is Now on eBay; $2,000 Backpack, Anyone?

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 6, 2014 11:54 AM

The Alexander Wang collection launch at H&M today saw fans line up around the block around the world, sparking crowd control issues as its local websites crashed, although they're starting to come back online.

Some fans were snapping up $5,000 worth of the New York-based designer's apparel at a time, with the menswear reportedly selling out quicker than the women's collection. No surprise, items are already popping up on eBay for up to $2,000 by one seller. Continue reading...

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