- Prachi Singh |
New York & Company, Inc. has announced the official launch of its corporate reinvention to a multibrand lifestyle platform. The company said that its vision is to be the premier incubator of lifestyle brands by leveraging the company’s expertise in celebrity, design, customer, ecommerce, operations, real estate, and inventory optimization to identify accretive brand and profit opportunities. As part of the transformation, the company is also changing its name to RTW Retailwinds.
Commenting on the announcement, Greg Scott, the company’s Chief Executive Officer said in a statement: “New York & Company is one of the largest specialty women’s retailers, with approximately 165 million annual visits and a combined social reach of over 30 million followers across our celebrity partners and we are leveraging our expertise to accelerate sales and profitability across our multibrand lifestyle platform, expanding the core New York & Company brand while also incubating new brands that are accretive to the portfolio. Our goal is to drive sales to well over 1 billion dollars and double-digit EBITDA margins.”
New York & Company announces transformation plan
The Company’s multibrand lifestyle platform, the company added, will accelerate growth of the New York & Company brand through ongoing celebrity partnerships, including collaborations with Eva Mendes, Gabrielle Union and Kate Hudson, while also expanding the recently acquired plus-size brand, Fashion to Figure, as well as introducing several new brands, including a lingerie lifestyle brand and the Kate Hudson Collection that leverage the company’s design capabilities, digital platform, and operational expertise.
“Today, over 30 percent of our sales are generated digitally, we have optimized our retail footprint, and have the talent and infrastructure to capitalize on our strengths. In fact, with the second quarter of 2018, we reported our fourth consecutive quarter of comparable store sales growth, our highest gross margin rate achieved in the second quarter since 2005, and are on track to achieve adjusted EBITDA of 35 million dollars to 37 million dollars for the fiscal year, up from adjusted EBITDA of 30.5 million dollars in fiscal year 2017.”
The company’s strategy is to create a multibrand platform, unlock and amplify lifestyle, category, and customer opportunities that demonstrate market potential, competitive whitespace, and are sales and profit accretive and grow New York & Company to over 1 billion dollars in annual sales, while expanding celebrity collections, driving fashion and versatility through sub-brands, and introducing new categories while expanding gross margins through pricing and promotions initiatives, strategic sourcing capabilities, and enhanced inventory optimization.
New York & Company to expand plus size offering
As a part of its growth strategy, the company would also expand plus-size brand, Fashion To Figure eyeing 21 billion dollars opportunity the plus-size marker holds. The market is also growing at twice the rate of the overall apparel market.
The company will also introduce Kate Hudson Collection across multiple points of distribution, including standalone digital site and New York & Company ecommerce marketplace. The Kate Hudson Collection will be a casual lifestyle brand anchored in denim with the potential to grow across multiple distribution channels.
Taking advantage of the 16 billion dollars lingerie market across bras, panties, sleepwear, and shapewear, the company also plans to offer a full selection of lingerie lifestyle products through a standalone digital site that balance fashion with fit, function with comfort, amplified with a celebrity partner and authentic cause platform.
New York & Company currently operates physical footprint of 425 stores, a digital presence which represented 30 percent of 2017 sales, a customer file with over 13 million names, and approximately 165 million annual visits online and in stores. The company’s loyalty member base represents 43 percent of total sales with its members providing a runway for growth for each of its digital brands.
“RTW Retailwinds moves forward with a strengthened operating model that leverages design capabilities, sourcing expertise, digital platform, and operational foundation that will incubate new brands with a significant digital presence and strong loyalty base and deliver long term profitability. I look forward to continuing to assist the company to achieve its goals as a board member and a shareholder,” added John Howard, Co-Managing Partner of Irving Place Capital and member of the New York & Company board of directors.
Picture credit:New York & Company