It’s been another week with far more retail news than there is time in the day. Below, we break down some things you may have missed during the week and what we’re still thinking about.
From Adidas CEO Bjørn Gulden issuing an apology to the future of Lululemon and Peloton, here’s our closeout for the week.
What you may have missed
Adidas CEO apologizes to the head of the Anti-Defamation League over Ye comments
Last week, Adidas CEO Bjørn Gulden apologized to the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League Jonathan Greenblatt about his “misstatement” regarding Ye, also known as Kanye West. The chief executive came under fire last week for comments he made on a podcast about the end of the Yeezy partnership. When asked about the apology, Adidas pointed Retail Dive to a post by Greenblatt on X, formerly known as Twitter, and gave its own statement.
“Our decision to end our partnership with Ye because of his unacceptable comments and behavior was absolutely the right one,” the company said via email. “Our stance has not changed: Hate of any kind has no place in sports or society, and we remain committed to fighting it.”
Lee launches a unisex collection
Lee this week announced its first unisex apparel collaboration with streetwear brand Roaringwild.
“Lee has been in Asian markets for nearly 30 years and is the leader in denim in China,” Brigid Stevens, Lee’s global vice president of marketing, said in a statement. “Roaringwild is one of the biggest streetwear brands there; we’re proud to be their first denim collaboration and showcase this unique vision to our consumers around the globe.”
The capsule collection features graphic T-shirts, denim jackets and jeans in oversized fits that are inspired by ‘80s nostalgia. Products range in price from $80 to $230 and are in sizes XS to XL.
A.K.A. Brands initiates reverse stock split
A.K.A. Brands, which owns Princess Polly and Culture Kings, earlier this week announced that it would initiate a one-for-12 reverse stock split of its common stock, effective close of market on Friday, following approval from its board.
The reverse stock split is primarily intended for the company to regain compliance with the New York Stock Exchange regarding the minimum bid price requirement, A.K.A. said in its announcement.
The move comes after the company in April received a delisting warning from the NYSE as a result of falling out of compliance with the exchange’s requirement that a company’s common stock close at $1 and above for 30 consecutive days. The company had six months from the notification date to regain compliance.
A.K.A. Brands at the time said its plan to remedy the issue with the NYSE could include a reverse stock split.
Wrangler and Barbie make western pink
The Barbie hype isn’t quite over yet. Wrangler launched a collection in collaboration with Mattel’s Barbie, according to a press release on Wednesday. The 40-piece collection offers western-inspired, mix-and-match pieces for both women and girls across jeans, shirts, dresses, T-shirts and jackets.
“Barbie has become a permanent and cultural symbol of empowerment, and with this collection we aim to encourage individuals from all walks of life to embrace their unique identities and make a statement that echoes across time," Wrangler Senior Vice President Jenni Broyles said in a statement.
Items in the collection range from $24 to $140. Wrangler x Barbie is available on Wrangler.com and at key retailers, including Dillard’s, Buckle, Boot Barn and Cavender’s.
Spirit Halloween teams up with Butterfinger
Did you know that a store can have an official candy bar? That’s happening this year at Spirit Halloween, which announced a collaboration with Butterfinger.
Fans have a chance to win a case of full-size candy bars, a mystery pack of Spirit Halloween décor and a store gift card for a total value of $1,000 (guaranteeing you would be the most popular house on the block).
"We live and breathe Halloween 365 days a year, and we know candy plays a special role in celebrations for many during the Halloween season," Kym Sarkos, executive vice president of Spirit Halloween, said in a statement. “[W]e are so excited to team up with Butterfinger, one of our favorite candy bars, to make that visit even sweeter this year."
What we’re still thinking about
That’s the number of stores Target plans to close next month. The company said despite several initiatives and investments, including additional security staff and theft deterrent tools, they’ve been unable to manage theft and organized retail crime at these store locations. Those issues, the company said, threaten the safety of employees and customers and business performance.
One store will close in New York City; two in the Seattle area and three stores each will close in the San Francisco and Portland, Oregon regions. Target said earlier that shrink could cut its profits this year by more than $500 million.
That’s the number of states that joined the Federal Trade Commission in suing Amazon this week. The states and the FTC are accusing Amazon of engaging in punitive, coercive and anticompetitive practices that hurt consumers and the retailer’s marketplace sellers.
The FTC said some of Amazon’s tactics include replacing organic search results with paid advertisements and prioritizing the company’s own products over superior items. In response, Amazon said its practices have spurred retail industry competition and led to more selection, lower prices, and faster delivery for many businesses selling in Amazon’s store.
What we’re watching
Lululemon, Peloton form a fitness dream team
Athletics companies Lululemon and Peloton have joined forces in an effort to address challenges in their businesses.
Through a five-year global startegic partnership announced Wednesday, Lululemon will be the primary athletic apparel partner for Peloton while Peloton will become Lululemon’s exclusive provider for digital fitness content.
The deal means that Lululemon will discontinue selling Mirror workout devices by end of the year – which the company had acquired for $500 million in 2020. It will also sunset its its digital app-only membership tier in November, giving customers the choice to become a Peloton App One member instead. Meanwhile, co-branded apparel from Lululemon will be available for purchase at Peloton retail stores and on Peloton’s website in the U.S as well as select other countries beginning in October.
The move is somewhat of an “enemies to friends” tale. Peloton settled lawsuits with Lululemon in 2022 over allegations that Peloton had used some of its apparel designs in its private apparel collection. The settlement meant that Peloton would get rid of certian clothing designs.
For Lululemon, its Mirror deal wound up being a sore spot in the company’s otherwise thriving business, with hardware sales disappointing in its fourth quarter results from March.
Overall, the deal signifies a benefit to both companies who were less-successful in their own supplemental business ventures. Instead of trying to compete with the competition, why not team up?