celebrity designers

Kohl's Latest Fashion Gambit: JLo and Marc Lifestyle Brand

Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 19, 2010 12:30 PM

Hold onto your skirts. By this time next year, you'll be able to buy a line of his-and-her products blessed by one of the music's world's most prominent couples, Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony at Kohl's (that's right, Kohl's).

In an exclusive seven-year deal that hits stores Fall 2011, Kohl's will market women's and men's apparel, accessories, and potentially other products under the new brand.

It's a unique arrangement; while celebrities often launch their own individual lines, it is rare for a married couple to do so together. Even Victoria Beckham says she's reluctant to launch a brand with husband David, despite their respective powerhouse personal brands.

Why put Jenny on the block? And her husband?

Kohl's senior marketing exec Don Brennan tells Billboard, "We looked at Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony and looked at the awareness that's out there for both of them, and it's at a very high level. They're both incredibly influential in the entertainment industry, they're really style icons and that's what really builds credibility. We think that both appeal to a really broad group of customers."

JLo's public profile is higher than ever since she became a judge on Fox TV's American Idol. Lopez launched her own JLO by Jennifer Lopez clothing line in 2001, but a deal she had with Sweetface ended last year. Marc Anthony, a five-time Grammy Award winner, continues to achieve outstanding success in the Latin music world. Anthony just launched his own app for iPhone, iPod, and iPad, but has yet to lend his name to a lifestyle brand, so the Kohl's deal is a first for him.

Lopez and Anthony represent a high-profile couple that offers Kohl's yet another entry point into the important Hispanic market. Kohl's already sells a Daisy Fuentes-branded line of clothing, accessories, fragrance and bedding.

Kohl's new line is expected to have strong media support and be available in the fall of 2011. The retailer has aggressively followed the pattern of retailers like Target in forging relationships with celebrities and designers. Private label merchandise accounts for more than half of Kohl's sales.

So the Jennifer Lopez-Marc Anthony is business as usual for Kohl's — but it's a big coup for the retailer, likely to result in a multi-billion dollar payoff.

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