In typical “frenemy” fashion, Amazon appears to be getting into the activewear market by inking a deal with the Taiwanese supplier for Nike, Under Armour, and Lululemon and hiring brand managers to help launch a private label brand in the athleisure space. It’s worth noting that Nike just recently became an official distributor on Amazon’s marketplace.
Amazon will likely launch a line of low-price basics such as yoga pants or performance shirts, as those typically sell better than premium or specialty sportswear on the e-tailer’s marketplace. L2’s recent analysis of the activewear market on Amazon finds that the most frequently used keywords in Best Seller listing titles for Sports & Fitness Clothing are “compression” and “yoga,” and that the average price across all Best Sellers in the category is just $13.60.
As the women’s activewear market on Amazon is particularly fragmented, this could be an opportunity for the e-tailer to exploit white space opportunities. Legacy brands Under Armour, adidas, and Nike represent just 11% of Best Seller listings in Women’s Sports & Fitness Clothing, whereas they account for the majority in the men’s category. Amazon is also becoming a more popular destination for women’s activewear clothing. In June, women’s products represented 32% of Best Sellers in the Sports & Fitness Clothing category, up from 24% in March, according to L2 data.
The brands most at risk of being out-muscled by Amazon (should it launch an activewear line) are smaller upstarts like ODODOS and 90 Degrees by Reflex, both of which are Amazon top-sellers offering low-priced athleisure clothing. Legacy brands Nike, Under Armour, and adidas may be immune to encroachment by Amazon because of their substantial brand equity.