Kohl’s challenges Lululemon with a new Athleisure line
Department store chain Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) today announced its entry into the growing sportswear market which has been primarily dominated by Iululemon athletics (NASDAQ: LULU). Kohl’s private label, dubbed FLX, will be available online and in select stores from March 2021.
Lululemon announced increased sales for its second quarter ended August 2, 2020 even as many other retailers battled the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The company said a shift to working from home, along with a greater concern for health and well-being, has increased interest in the sports recreation market.
Kohl’s adds the private label as a way to “strengthen our position as a destination for athletic and casual wear,” the company’s director of merchandising Doug Howe said in a press release.
The new FLX clothing line is intended to complement its current range of sports and leisure clothing with a premium sports offering. Over the past year, the company has expanded its line by offering products of expanded size within the category, including Under protection (NYSE: UA) (NYSE: UAA) and Adidas (OTC: ADDYY) tall and tall.
Kohl reported revenue down 23% in the second quarter ended August 1. Its online sales, however, increased by 58% compared to the period of the previous year. One bright spot was with sportswear, and the company increased the square footage devoted to sportswear in 160 of its stores by 25%. FLX will meet home or on-the-go needs with travel pants and compressible jackets, the company said in a statement.
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