Will acquiring a pizza chain boost Urban Outfitters’ fortunes?
Urban Outfitters, Inc., parent company of its namesake retail chain along with Anthropologie, Bhldn, Free People and Terrain, announced yesterday that it has entered into an agreement to acquire substantially all of The Vetri Family group of restaurants, including Pizzeria Vetri.
The Vetri group was created by Marc Vetri, a James Beard award winning chef. Food and Wine Magazine named Pizzeria Vetri the best pizza restaurant in the U.S.
"Spending on casual dining is expanding rapidly, and thus we believe there is tremendous opportunity to expand the Pizzeria Vetri concept," said Richard A. Hayne, CEO of Urban Outfitters, Inc., in a statement.
"Through this partnership, and the experience URBN has in scaling growth opportunities, the Vetri Family will now be able to focus on what we do best — run restaurants that make people happy," said Mr. Vetri.
Analysts at Stifel, via CNBC, see potential for Urban Outfitters to add Pizzeria Vetri to select stores to help drive additional traffic. "While we are surprised by the announcement, we believe there is cross-shopping potential between URBN retail stores and Pizzeria Vetri, given the similar customer demographic," the analysts wrote.
Photos: The Vetri Family
Adding pizzerias to stores might not be completely out of left field for Urban Outfitters, which sees itself as "lifestyle specialty" company and not simply a clothing retailer.
As a recent article by Carol Spieckerman on RetailWire pointed out, Urban Outfitters has benefited from taking somewhat contrarian positions in the past, such as its decision to focus on selling vinyl records when the industry was going digital. Today, Urban Outfitters is the leading seller in this growing niche market.
Urban Outfitters, along with many of its peers has struggled this year. Per CNBC, the company’s shares are down 35 percent to date.
- URBN to Acquire The Vetri Family of Restaurants – Urban Outfitters, Inc./Globe Newswire
- Urban Outfitters to enter pizza market with new deal – CNBC
- How can retailers find the right balance between tech and humans – RetailWire
Will acquiring Pizzeria Vetri help boost Urban Outfitters’ retail sales or distract management from its core business? Do you see the company adding pizzerias to its namesake banner as well as Anthropologie, Bhldn, Free People and Terrain?