- Target is launching a new private label activewear and sporting goods brand, dubbed "All in Motion," the company announced Thursday. All in Motion will be available on Target's website on Jan. 17 and in all Target stores by Jan. 24.
- The label targets men, women and kids and uses "a size-inclusive assortment that incorporates quality, durable fabrics and sustainably sourced materials," according to Jill Sando, a Target senior vice president and general merchandise manager for apparel, accessories and home.
- Target said that it drew on deep customer research to design the line. Customers wanted "fabrics that feel good and perform well," as well as low prices, the company said. The collection ranges in price from $3.99 to $69.99, with a majority of the products under $40.
Target seemed to take direct aim at some of the largest and priciest athletics apparel makers with the launch of All in Motion. "Wellness may be everywhere, but a pair of quality leggings at affordable prices? Not so much," Target said in its release.
The mass merchant is responding to broad trends in the apparel world, with customers switching out formality and fashion for comfort and performance. Those retailers that have failed to keep up with the trend, especially in women's apparel, have lost out on sales.
The women's sports apparel market in 2018 was valued at $26.8 billion, according to data from Euromonitor International, and the total sports apparel market was $80.1 billion. In response, major sportswear players have been diving into the women's market, where they see a greater growth opportunity. (Activewear also happens to be a top apparel category for Amazon, according to Coresight Research.)
Private labels have been a key part of Target's turnaround strategy, and analysts have credited them with the retailer's stellar performance last year and increased market share in a troubled apparel sector. Late last year, the company lost one of the key architects of that strategy, former chief merchant Mark Tritton, to Bed Bath & Beyond, which he heads now as CEO. Sando is one of two merchandising executives currently filling Tritton's previous role.
Target's focus on size inclusivity also opens up more opportunity for the retailer. Target can potentially steal share from specialists while providing customers a more inclusive retail experience. Citing falling sales at Ascena Retail Group — which owns plus-sized brands Lane Bryant and Catherines — retail analyst Jane Hali told Retail Dive last year that "the plus size customer does not want to be separated at brick and mortar."
Target, on the other hand, "is very definite about plus size being inclusive, with plus size mannequins next to regular size mannequins," added Hali.