Talks of Intermix Partnership With Gap Inc.
Intermix, which has been looking for a strategic partner since August, is currently in discussions with Gap Inc. about plans for expansion. Khajak Keledjian, founder and chief executive officer of Intermix, said Thursday, “Intermix is currently in discussions with Gap Inc. We are excited to potentially align with this iconic retailer to capitalize on the significant growth potential within the luxury market. As we are in the midst of the due diligence process, we cannot comment further.” A spokesman for Gap Inc. seemed equally excited about a possible partnership. It wasn’t immediately clear how a partnership would be structured, or even how long the due-diligence process would take. Sources said the two are exploring different possibilities, and are not ruling out an acquisition. Intermix specializes in contemporary apparel and accessories that are both feminine and luxurious, and showcases them in its stores by look and lifestyle rather than by brand or category. It’s the lifestyle focus on merchandising, particularly at the local store level, that seems to have brought back the consumer following the downturn in 2008, when the economy tanked and Intermix found itself in turnaround mode. The chain works with 220 brands and mixes established luxury designer labels with up-and-coming brands. Intermix has 33 stores in total, including an international location on Bloor Street in Toronto. Ideally, the New York-based firm is hoping to connect with a partner that has a bigger platform either in the U.S. or internationally, with the goal toward working together on expanding Intermix’s footprint. The company hasn’t ruled out the possibility of working with a partner that also has some sourcing experience that can help Intermix launch its own private label. That’s where Gap could come in and provide some expert merchandising and retail know-how, whether across the U.S. market or internationally, and even in the e-commerce arena, presuming the parties are able to reach an agreement. Gap operates the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime and Athleta nameplates.
New Saint Laurent Concept Comes To U.S.
A 2,200-square-foot unit with Hedi Slimane’s new floor-to-ceiling concept just opened in the Bal Harbour Shops in Bal Harbour, Florida. The one-level boutique is dedicated to women’s ready-to-wear and women’s accessories. Other confirmed openings for this year that will reflect the Slimane concept include Chicago, San Francisco and the SoHo district of New York City. At present, Saint Laurent counts eight directly operated stores in the U.S. The Yves Saint Laurent brand has been present in Bal Harbour since 2002. Slimane’s debut collections for Saint Laurent are expected to land at retail in January. As part of his 360-degree makeover of the fashion house, Slimane introduced a store design that incorporates black and white marble, raw concrete and display furniture with gold, silver, mirror and glass. Design references include the French Art Deco and Union des Artistes Modernes (French Union of Modern Artists) movements. Plans call for the 51-year-old fashion house to open about 15 directly operated stores and shops-in-shop a year, all under the new Saint Laurent banner, which Slimane chose to symbolize the principles of youth, freedom and modernity that inspired the creation of Saint Laurent Rive Gauche ready to wear back in 1966.
Drew Barrymore Does Makeup Line For Walmart
Drew Barrymore will debut her new makeup range, Flower, this January. Drew has dabbled in beauty for years now, having been a face of Covergirl since 2007 and Lancome prior to that. She’s recently gone into a multi-year agreement with Wal-Mart. Unlike many celeb product lines, Barrymore has done much more than just license her name and lend her famous face. The actress actually co-owns the line with design and manufacturing firm Maesa Group, and is said to be involved in every step of the process. So what exactly will a Drew Barrymore makeup line look like? Flower, which is also the name of her production company, is being positioned as a “luxury at mass market” line. According to Carmen Bauza, the vice president of beauty and personal care at Wal-Mart, Flower has the potential to resonate with that beauty holy grail, the “aspirational” customer. To that end, the products are going to be custom-made and contain many of the same fancy ingredients that traditional luxury products do. So how are they going to get away with selling it at Wal-Mart prices? No expensive ad campaigns and no huge sales force. Because it’s an exclusive deal with Wal-Mart, Flower will use Drew Barrymore’s popularity, social media, and Wal-Mart’s “reach” to market it. So the budget that would have gone into advertising instead went into the formula. Packaged in white with rose gold tags, the 181-piece line will sell for $4.98 to $13.98. Maesa senior director Petra Tucker-Moss told WWD that the BB cream is a “true” one, meaning that it contains actual treatment ingredients rather than just being a glorified tinted moisturizer. We also like the sound of the Ultimate Mascara, which Barrymore said was inspired by that 80s staple, Maybelline Dial-a-Lash. You can actually change the shape of the brush depending on if you need volume or lengthening.
– Selicia A. Walker
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