Levi’s to Stand Alone
Levi’s is looking to roll out new standalone stores sporting new styles so the company may once again establish itself as the jeans that teenage girls most want to wear.
According to the San Francisco Business Times, Levi’s intends to move beyond the 45 standalone locations it currently operates with 20 new stores being opened this year. Seven of the 20 have already opened.
Howard Davidowitz, chairman of Davidowitz & Associates, said Levi’s is engaged in an act of self-preservation. “If you are an apparel supplier, it is imperative that you develop your own retail stores to protect your business. You can’t put your faith in department stores, who are pushing brands less and less and private label more and more.”
Levi’s is looking to use its stores to introduce new items it hopes will expand its franchise to greater numbers of young consumers. It has attempted similar approaches to younger consumers in the past without success.
“We’re really focused now,” said Loreen Zakem, president of Levi’s brand wholesale. “As we go forward, we’re crystal clear about our consumer, how we deliver and how we maximize performance across all price points.”
Discussion Questions: What is your reaction to Levi’s standalone store strategy? What do you see as the keys for it to find the right balance between its own stores and other merchants that carry its products? Levi’s is trying to reach consumers across a variety of demographics (adults, teens, etc.) and price points (lines developed for department stores, mass merchants, standalone stores). Can it do all of this successfully?