The moves are part of Walmart’s push to make its apparel business more streamlined and stylish.
Walmart is introducing low-cost clothing brands for women, kids and plus-size customers, aiming to lure shoppers as Amazon gobbles up more apparel sales.
The store brands include Time and Tru in ladieswear — which will replace the jettisoned DanskinNow label — along with Terra & Sky in plus-size apparel and Wonder Nation for kids, according to a company presentation to suppliers obtained by Bloomberg News. The George apparel brand, which Walmart brought over from its British unit Asda, will be refocused for men only. The new brands will replace older ones such as Faded Glory and White Stag.
The retailer is “Launching new brands, not labels,” according to one of the slides presented at the meeting, which took place at the retailer’s headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, in late January. “We will cover every aspect of fashion.”
The moves are part of Walmart’s push to make its apparel business more streamlined and stylish. If the brands catch on, they could check the encroachment of Amazon, which is now the second-most-shopped apparel retailer, trailing only Walmart, according to a recent study.
Apparel accounted for 11 percent of Walmart’s U.S. sales a decade ago, but the company dialed back its ambitions in 2011 after attempts to appeal to more fashion-forward shoppers — including ads in Vogue magazine — flopped. The retailer closed its Manhattan product-development office and endured a revolving door of executive reshuffles.
But over the past year, the acquisitions of apparel startups Bonobos and ModCloth, along with a partnership to sell Lord & Taylor’s products on its website, have brought some fashion sense back to the company.