The last month of Q1 2019 brought news focused on retail innovations as it relates to technology and customer service. KWI client NARS Cosmetics announced it will be rolling out virtual try-ons via a partnership with Perfect Corp. where clients can use the virtual reality technology via iPads. In addition, two DTC retail brands have been named unicorns with Glossier raising $100m and Rent the Runway announced a $125m investment, making both brands worth more than $1 billion. And KWI client Quay Australia made headlines for launching a sunglass line with Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez.
It’s been another busy month in the world of retail as many blue-chip brands reported earnings and many retailers made their way to ShopTalk in Vegas. We saw headlines about stores shutting physical locations including JCPenney, Victoria’s Secret, Payless, and Gymboree to name a few. But not all was doom and gloom. Gap announced it would spin off Old Navy into a separate company and that it would acquire children’s retailer Janie and Jack. And Allbirds announced it was expanding to China, opening its first physical stores in the country.
New York Fashion Week, which is the kickoff to a month of global fashion shows, saw incredible fashion labels take
to the runway to promote their new collections and brands. Eager fashion lovers, high-end buyers and the global media watched carefully to see the epic creativity and latest trends, and look ahead at what next season and the one after holds.
Twenty-nineteen started off with a bang in the retail world as brands dug out from the holiday craze to refocus on the year’s new goals and initiatives. The NRF Big Show dominated the headlines as did reports of a successful holiday season, with Mastercard SpendingPulse reporting U.S. retail sales up 5.1 percent, the strongest performance in six years. Here’s a look at some of the stories that caught our eye in January.