In a further attempt to shed its image as a place where rippling six-packs and bronzed bodies go to commune with the hot powers that be, Abercrombie & Fitch is doing away with its policy on having only super hot sales associates in its stores, opening up its doors to anyone with a dream of selling khaki cargo shorts and pre-ripped jeans.
This week, Bloomberg Businessweek asks the question: can Abercrombie & Fitch be saved? Now that the retailer is losing sales, it has removed logos from its clothing, introduced the color black, and started selling some clothes above women’s size 10. (Mostly online, of course.) Is that enough to save the company, which for years was controlled by a CEO who saw himself, at age 70, as exactly like his 25-year-old ideal customers? [More]
Back in 2008, a 17-year-old in Oklahoma applied for a job at a local Abercrombie Kids store. She made the cut, but learned that the store’s “look policy” wouldn’t allow her to wear a religious head covering. Just over a year ago, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission won the right for employees to wear religious head coverings while they battle the cologne stench at Abercrombie, but the headscarf itself isn’t what this case is about. [More]
Are the highlights in your hair sunkissed and subtle with complementary shading? Then maybe you can work for Abercrombie & Fitch. But those of you with “chunks of contrasting color” can go work at a store that doesn’t think plus-size consumers are the “not-so-cool kids.” [via Buzzfeed, which has many other details from the Abercrombie employee handbook]
Retailers and manufacturers continue to react to last month’s tragedy at the Rana Plaza factory outside of Dhaka, Bangladesh, that resulted in the deaths of more than 1,100 people. Days after Walmart announced its own program to review and inspect manufacturing facilities in the region, JCPenney has outlined its plans to audit factories. [More]
Abercrombie CEO Sorry That People Didn’t Like When He Said Plus-Size People Don’t Belong In His Clothes
A couple weeks back, the Internet found more reasons to hate Abercrombie & Fitch after people resurrected a 2006 interview in which CEO Mike Jeffries said his company deliberately avoids selling to the “not-so-cool kids,” which was his way of referring to people who aren’t skinny. Now Jeffries is apologizing, not for what he said, but really just because people are upset about it. [More]