The largest web retailer in North America moves to interest “artisan” sellers in the Handmade online marketplace.
The new Athleta store will be the company’s first full-service store for that brand.
Gap Inc. is looking beyond the web and catalog to grow its Athleta sportswear brand. The company opened a flagship Athleta store in San Francisco’s Fillmore neighborhood. The 5,000 square-foot-store will sell Athleta’s line of apparel for yoga, hiking, swimming and other activities.
“This store opening launches the next phase of our multichannel growth plan for the Athleta brand,” says Toby Lenk, president of Gap Inc. Direct, No. 23 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. “What began as a catalog business 12 years ago evolved into a successful online channel, and today marks another milestone for the Athleta brand.”
As a bridge to its sales channels, the store will offer kiosks where customers can browse the Gap.com web site.
Gap purchased Athleta in September 2008 for about $150 million. In April 2009, the company added an Athleta tab to its main e-commerce site, which enables consumers to shop the company’s different brands such as Old Navy, Gap or Piperlime and make purchases through a single checkout.