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How Athleisurewear Boom Has Impacted the US Apparel Industry

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Part 4
How Athleisurewear Boom Has Impacted the US Apparel Industry PART 4 OF 9

Athleisurewear Rush: Which Retailers Are Taking Advantage?

New entrants in athleisurewear

Some popular chain stores and sporting goods retailers (XRT) (RTH) have been quick to cash in on the athleisurewear trend. Gap (GPS), L Brands (LB), and Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) have launched their own activewear lines. So has sporting goods retailer Dick’s Sporting Goods (DKS) with its Calia line with Carrie Underwood and department store Kohl’s (KSS) in partnership with Shay Mitchell.

Athleisurewear Rush: Which Retailers Are Taking Advantage?

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L Brands’ (LB) Pink brand caters to college-age women. It offers a range of loungewear, athletic tops and bottoms, and innerwear. The company operates about 128 Pink stores in the United States. The brand has recently been one of the most important drivers for the company’s sales in the United States. Besides store expansion, L Brands is looking at a considerable opportunity in expanding Pink’s presence in its existing US store footprint.

Gap operates 120 US stores under its activewear brand Athleta. It plans to open another 15 stores this year. Gap is also looking at a performance wear brand for young girls under the brand Athleta Girl, slated to launch in the summer of 2016.

Last year, Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) also launched a sportier line to cash in on the athleisurewear trend. It made this move since the brand’s own products weren’t resonating with its target market.

Sports goods retailer and women’s demographics

Sports goods retailer Foot Locker (FL) is also strategizing on opportunities in the women’s demographic. It’s looking to build retail format SIX:02 as the company’s primary format for providing women with premium options for activewear and other fitness gear. It plans to build the format as a go-to destination for meeting fitness needs. The company expects activewear to be a key driver for higher store traffic and conversions, particularly for the women and young athletes demographics.

Other major companies providing activewear options include Urban Outfitters (URBN), Gildan Activewear (GIL), Bebe Stores (BEBE), and G-III Apparel (GIII).

Several companies are also looking at inorganic options to enter the space. We’ll take a look at these in the next part of this series.

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