Leifsdottir and its creative team are coming home to Anthropologie. Urban Outfitters, owner of both concepts, announced yesterday that Anthropologie will be the exclusive home of Leifsdottir once spring deliveries are complete. Additionally, Johanna Uurasjarvi, Creative Director for Leifsdottir, will return to the Anthropologie brand as the Executive Creative Director of Anthropologie Product Design.
From the press release:
Today Urban Outfitters announced that the Leifsdottir brand will be sold exclusively at Anthropologie stores and through its direct-to-consumer business, and will discontinue wholesale distribution with the conclusion of spring deliveries. Johanna Uurasjarvi, Creative Director for Leifsdottir, will return to the Anthropologie brand as the Executive Creative Director of Anthropologie Product Design. “We believe this change gives us the best opportunity to maximize the brand equity of the Leifsdottir label, and we are excited to welcome Johanna back to the Anthropologie business,” said Glen T. Senk, Chief Executive Officer. The Company expects to record one-time costs of approximately $2.7 million in the first quarter of the current fiscal year for the disposal of certain Leifsdottir assets, disposition of inventory and other related costs.
Does this mean that Leifsdottir couldn’t stand on its own as a wholesale product? Not really. The marketing efforts for the brand have stepped up over the last two quarters and retail orders have been healthy by all accounts. More likely is that this is part of the continuing strategy shift for Anthropologie that recently saw Barney’s New York executive Judy Collinson come on board as Anthro’s Executive Director of Women’s Apparel. Personally I’m very excited to welcome Ms. Uurasjarvi back into the fold. I’ve long adored her designs both for Anthro and Leifsdottir.
Urban Outfitters also snuck in some quick quarterly reporting: quarter-to-date comparable retail segment sales through the Easter holiday weekend were low single-digit negative. Eep. Not surprising but not great news either. Who would have thought that Free People would be the concept driving sales at Urban Outfitters? I can’t wait to see Anthro’s design team turn it around. This shapeless boxy stuff is driving me nuts.
What do you think about Anthropologie becoming Leifsdottir’s once-and-again exclusive home?