nautica brand losing ground
Fortune learned that the shipping-themed sportswear brand Nautica faces the prospect of reducing product sales space in some large department stores.
The initiatives of Dillard and Macy\'s highlight the challenges manufacturers face after the department store consolidation wave, which has shifted the balance of power from the national brands that these stores once dreamed
Big chains like Macy\'s (
Formed through a 2005 merger between Union department stores and May, it has increasingly replaced branded goods with private labels and asked suppliers to trade exclusively.
Fortune learned about Dillard \'(
In terms of sales, the second largest department store chain in the United States after Macy\'s, plans to stop carrying the Nautica men\'s clothing series --
Kha cloth, dress shirt and sweater that has long been the cornerstone of the brand.
According to sources, Dillard will replace the products with his own private label from the beginning of next year.
President Eric Wisemanto-
Chief executive officer of the superior company at Nautica VF. (
But Dillard says they will continue to carry items, including women\'s and household items, in the name of Nautica.
He said that the men\'s sportswear sold by Dillard accounted for less than 10% of the brand\'s overall sales.
VF was not sold for specific brands, according to regulatory documents, but Nautica accounted for the majority of its sportswear revenue, which totaled $0. 685 billion last year.
Julie Bull, a spokeswoman for Dillard, said the company\'s policy is not to comment on the relationship with suppliers.
Macy\'s announced last week that it will be the exclusive retailer of Tommy Hilfiger\'s merchandise, which also puts pressure on Nautica.
Industry executives said Macy\'s is expected to provide more space for Tommy and vigorously promote the brand to stimulate sales, which may mean less space for Nautica merchandise at Macy\'s.
\"You have Polo Ralph Lauren (Charts)
\"On one side of the aisle, Tommy Hilfiger is on the other side,\" said a clothing executive at another company . \".
\"The Imperial card is to be squeezed.
Jim slozski, spokesman for Macy\'s department store, said the company had no plans to cut Nautica\'s products.
\"Nautica is a very strong brand at Macy\'s and remains a very important resource for us,\" he said . \".
\"It will continue to have a lot of space in our store.
Wiseman says he has no indication that Macy\'s is planning any changes to its Nautica product line, but admits the competition is fierce.
\"We have to win every bit of floor space at Macy\'s,\" he said . \".
\"So is Tommy Hilfiger.
Tommy will get a new life out of the deal, which is not a fait accompli.
\"Polo, Tommy and Nautica have been the top three brands of men\'s sportswear for years, but in the face of growing competition from emerging markets, only polo has its own sportswear, especially the city labels like Sean John and rockawal.
Tommy Hilfiger, who used to be synonymous with the lifestyle of the prepaid Country Club, stumbled as he tried to attract the inner city crowd.
The company was acquired in 2005 by private equity firm Apax Partners, which has slashed its operations in the United States. S.
Europe focused on sales growth.
As for Nautica, the brand lost its connection to the classic roots by turning too fashionable and then being too rough in style. VF, a $6.
The 2 billion garment manufacturer, including brands such as Lee jeans and North Face, acquired Nautica in 2003 and tried to re-focus the label on its maritime heritage.
VF improves the quality of the Nautica button down shirt by doubling the number of threads and adds more designer touches such as pin-
Stripes of navy woolblend blazers.
A women\'s dress collection was re-launched in 2006, followed by accessories and perfumes.
Despite these efforts, sales have fluctuated.
Revenue from the Nautica brand fell 10% in the third quarter, in part because the shift in the calendar pushed some orders to the fourth quarter, but also because of the downturn in department store sales.
A big problem is that unlike some other brands that have built their own boutiques, Nautica still relies on department stores for most of its sales.
Nautica 122 U. S.
There are 199 stores overseas, but there are currently no
There are shops with prices.
In recent years, the share of department stores has declined as shoppers turn to trendy specialty stores and discount stores.
The more complex problem is a wave of consolidation that has led retailers such as Macy\'s to close dozens of overlapping stores, with sales down by about $3 billion, according to some estimates.
At the same time, these stores have increased the number of private label items on the shelves, further replacing some national brands.
Private label items are specially designed and manufactured for retailers and brands cannot be found elsewhere, such as Alfani at Macy\'s and the name of the franchise club.
Retailers like their own brands because they tend to have higher profit margins than branded goods.
Garment manufacturers who are not satisfied with the new arrangement have little choice.
In addition to Macy\'s, which has sales of $27 billion, the second-largest department store, Dillard, has sales of $7.
8 billion, followed by several smaller regional players such as Bon-Ton and Belk.
A possible solution for brands like Nautica is to reach an agreement with J. C. Penney (
Fortune 500or Kohl\'s (
Both of these are considered to be traditional options for more moderate prices
Chain department stores.
But few companies are willing to take the risk of angering Macy\'s through such deals, as Liz Klein did when J. launched a series of low-priced outfitsC.
Penny last spring.
Macy\'s said it wanted to sell more exclusive brands and cut orders for Liz kleburn\'s range of goods sold in its stores.
Notika was not sold to J, Wiseman said. C.
Penny or Cole.
\"We live in department stores,\" he said . \"
Meanwhile, the brand is conducting another strategic review, the second since VF acquired the brand.
\"We are re-examining our strategy and asking, \'where are we going from here? \'?