A rough year for Gap Inc and some of its brands — Gap, Old Navy, and Banana Republic — just got rougher: A fire that tore through a major distribution warehouse for the retailer earlier this week means that customers in a busy region are going to have to wait longer than usual to get their hands on the stuff they paid for.
We’re always looking for the freshest new ideas in corporatespeak, which is why we’re very fond of a term that a Gap Inc. spokesperson used recently regarding falling sales at their Banana Republic brand. They called it “product acceptance challenges.” Turns out that’s not a new term: we found it used by now-bankrupt clothing retailer Coldwater Creek in 2011, for example. Not a good precedent. [Racked]
On-call scheduling is a retail practice that looks great on a store’s budget on paper, but wrecks employees’ lives in real life. Gap Inc. is the third major retailer in recent months that has announced that they’re ending the practice across all of their brands, after months working on what they call “sustainable scheduling practices.” [More]
Change is in the air at Gap Inc., which has been struggling to attract customers lately in the crowded retail arena of mid-priced clothing. After announcing in June it’d be closing 21% of its U.S. stores by January, for a total of 175 locations, the company is promising that it’s starting to turn things around, though changes won’t be immediate: by next spring, the company says it’ll have clothing people actually might want to buy.
The mid-priced clothing business simply isn’t what it used to be. Today, Gap Inc. announced that it will be closing 175 of its Gap stores in the next few years, and 140 of them will close during this fiscal year, which ends in January. However, it’s just regular Gap stores that are closing: the company’s upmarket Banana Republic brand and downmarket Old Navy brand are doing fine, as are Gap outlets and factory stores. [More]
Gap is shutting down its Piperlime brand. “Piper what?” you may be saying. Exactly. The brand started as an online-only shoe store, then expanded to mostly selling items from designer brands that aren’t Gap Inc. brands. The brand was more upscale than Banana Republic, and that simply didn’t catch on with consumers. [More]
A couple weeks back we told you about a petition asking Old Navy why it charges significantly more for plus-size women’s clothing but the largest men’s apparel is the same price as the mediums and smalls. The retailer explained to us that its women’s items are specially designed while the menswear is just larger versions of the same items, but there were still lingering questions, like why are there fewer plus-size options and why can’t you return them in the store? [More]
When men go shopping at Old Navy, it doesn’t matter what size they buy; prices don’t vary. But that’s not the same for women, who may have to pay extra if they purchase plus-size items. In just a few days, nearly 19,000 people have petitioned the retailer asking it to end this policy, but Old Navy claims there is a reason that it charges more for larger female sizes. [More]
After Gap Inc. made a pledge back in February to raise its lowest wage tier to $10 per hour over the next few years, the company has made its first move toward that higher minimum wage: Some 65,000 workers will start earning a minimum wage of $9 per hour this week. [More]
Rules are rules, and getting some special deals requires playing by the rules. If a company’s website lets you use multiple coupon codes together, then that means that the codes can be combined, no matter what the coupon fine print says, right? Well, no. [More]
While lawmakers argue about the possible benefits and risks of raising the federal minimum wage by more than 25%, the CEO of Gap Inc. says it will gradually increase its lowest wage tier to $10 an hour over the next two years. [More]
If you go shopping on Black Friday at a clothing store, you should take the time to brave the fitting rooms, no matter how long the lines are. Nick learned this the hard way, buying three pairs of jeans for $15 each. He made it out of the store unscathed, but when he got home, found that the jeans didn’t fit. Boo. Oh, well, he can just take them back to the store and swap them for the correct size, right? Not so fast!
When Jessica went shopping at Banana Republic last month, she forgot her store credit card. That was OK, the sales clerk assured her: she just needed Jessica’s Social Security number and for her to sign off on the transaction in order to access her existing card data in the system. Most people are so used to having our forgotten store loyalty cards looked up using our phone numbers that this seems natural enough. Only it wasn’t – by providing her SSN and signature, Jessica was actually applying for a Banana Republic Visa card.
Earlier today, the folks at once-mammoth clothing retailer Gap Inc. announced plans to shutter even more of its namesake Gap stores in the U.S. over the next 14.5 months, bringing the total number of stores to only 700 by the end of 2013.