- U.K. tech accessories retailer Soda Says launched in the U.S. market yesterday with products inside Neiman Marcus' Dallas flagship location and NeimanMarcus.com, according to a press release emailed to Retail Dive. "Soda" is an acronym for School of the Digital Age.
- Soda Says products will be added to ten Pop-In@Nordstrom locations in the U.S. and Canada, as well as at Nordstrom.com/pop by Friday, Nov. 16. Soda Says plans to further expand in the U.S. during 2019, and add to its product lines, the press release said.
- The brand's collections include Lifestyle, Tech-Cessories, Sleep & Beauty and Kids. Prices range from $25 to $445. Among its products: hand-woven customized Apple headphones; Bellabeat Urban Leaf, a health tracker in a piece of smart jewelry; and Dodow, a sleeping aid to slow breathing.
Filling a niche previously occupied by Brookstone, which filed for bankruptcy in August, Soda Says, a U.K.-based lifestyle tech retailer, is expanding into the U.S. and Canada. The women-led company aims to present fun, yet functional technology products geared toward women, per the release.
Founder Grace Gould said she got the idea for Soda Says after working in the technology industry and noticing that most products were made by men for men, with a lack of innovative items that women could relate to. "Tech is the future, but it doesn't have to remain dry or boring. We can embrace certain facets of it and make it fun and functional for us," said Gould in the press release. "Our mission is to serve up a collection of smartly designed products that save you time and enhance your life, and we're thrilled to now be doing so in the U.S. and Canada."
The Soda Says opening in Neiman Marcus comes just after bebe announced a partnership with Bluestar Alliance to acquire the Brookstone brand and related assets, reported a press release. The tech and gadget store Brookstone closed 101 stores and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in August for the second time, and shortly afterward, Bluestar Alliance and Apex Digital won an auction for the retailer with a bid valuing Brookstone at between $66 and $74 million. Bluestar owns bebe, which has also been financially troubled.
Neiman Marcus also is dealing with financial hardship and this week had its credit rating downgraded by S&P Global and Moody's. The department store chain is in talks with creditors about extending and possibly reducing its debt load. Analysts said they thought Neiman could announce a distressed debt exchange or restructuring within six months.