Chico's FAS on Wednesday announced its Soma intimates brand is partnering with retail concept b8ta, according to a company press release.
The "SOMAINNOFIT" bra, which uses technology to help consumers find the right fit, will be available in "several" b8ta stores, including New York City, Chicago, San Jose and Houston, as well as on its website.
Soma will also expand its existing partnership with QVC by launching additional sales initiatives, including participation in "Today's Special Value on QVC" on July 22. Soma initially debuted on the multi-channel retailer's broadcast in May 2018.
Soma's recent announcement to partner with tech-centric b8ta adds fuel to the tech fire that the brand is seemingly trying to cultivate.
The brand initially unveiled its SOMAINNOFIT bra in January as a way to improve the bra-fitting experience through the use of technology. The bra utilizes Bluetooth to sync to an app, which offers users product recommendations based on key measurements it records.
The b8ta and expanded QVC partnerships offer Soma the ability to put its product in front of the eyes of new potential customers. Chico's former CEO Shelley Broader, who resigned in April, previously said Chico FAS's sales through Amazon, Shoprunner and QVC were "driving new customer growth and exceeding our expectations. Although not yet financially significant in total, performance across each has been strengthening."
Mary van Praag, president of the Intimate Apparel Group at Chico's FAS, on Wednesday added in a statement that the company expects, "this will help us drive new customer acquisition, sales, brand awareness and consideration."
The move also pushes b8ta beyond robots and electronics, and further into apparel, namely "femtech" — a term referring to innovations in women's health and wellness. The retail concept in May announced a partnership with period panties brand Thinx, the retail concept's first foray into this type of tech.
"We've designed our stores to drive product discovery and education, while allowing the brand to gather critical insights and customer feedback around the new product," Carrie Kelly, senior vice president of Partnerships and Business Development at b8ta, said in a statement. "We're excited to be leaning into categories beyond consumer electronics and increasing our efforts to include more female products in our stores."