With today’s $11 million acquisition of high-end men’s wear label Todd Snyder, American Eagle Outfitters signaled a long-awaited reinvention.
“You need to make it exciting and new so a customer’s going to want to buy your jeans as opposed to someone else’s. You can’t just be the same old, same old,” global president Chad Kessler told The New York Times.
That credo aptly describes the challenge facing American Eagle as fast fashion and e-commerce infringe on the territory of traditional retailers. Largely, its response has been successful: diminish its retail footprint while steadily increasing investments in omnichannel. The brand’s recently relaunched mobile app showcases its expanded omnichannel capabilities: the “Reserve, Try, Buy” feature, for instance, allows users to place a hold on real-time in-store inventory. At a time when most retail brand apps aren’t too successful, the innovative app helped the brand earn fifth place in L2’s Digital IQ Index: Specialty Retail.
American Eagle is also acquiring Todd Snyder’s vintage-inspired Tailgate line, which targets the same teenage demographic as the soon-to-be parent company. Combining Tailgate’s local focus with American Eagle’s widespread reach and digital investments can create a stronger brand that appeals to millennials.
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