A new blog isn’t the only thing they have brewing over at the Lululemon greatness laboratory. Athleta be damned! Goals to conquer the internet frontier will unfold sooner than the previously planned Fall 2009 deadline – we’ll see Lulu bound into the e-commerce platform probably around Q2-Q3. Why the scramble? Blame it on the economy and slowing store expansion:
William Blair & Co. analyst Sharon Zackfia, who rates the stock “Market Perform,” said moving the e-commerce launch up from Fall 2009 will help absorb excess inventory Lululemon ordered before deciding to slow store growth. The company already has about 1 million customer addresses on hand for the launch
lululemon will launch a new product line in April which management thinks could be as big as its running segment, an area the company is expanding as well.
Obviously this is huge news for those of you gagging for lulu online shopping. Well it won’t be long now, you’ll be paying those extra shipping+handling fees before you know it! If you’re really dancin in your pants they’ve added a new order-by-phone, “Guest Education Center” (barf).
Since the stores are all about “local community” and touchy-feely interaction we’re interested to see how that translates online. Somehow we expect they’ll find a way to offend with their marketing campaigns regardless. Plus, a primary attraction to the lulu brand tends to be its exclusivity and personal touch, largely due to lack of internet presence, shrewd word of mouth propaganda and semi-sparse retail locations. So will this hurt the mystere/community or will it only bolster their stronghold and strengthen the empire? Lots more “ambassadors” on the interspace.
Also, as a side note, they were smart in keeping a loose attachment to yoga – apparently their “running segment” is big and they’re expanding into other territories. Seriously, when it comes to athletic clothing yoga is small beans, and in lulu’s case perhaps just the springboard they needed.
[Forbes.com via lululemonblog]
Earlier… Gap to Buy Athleta Inc, Make Play for Yoga Niche Market, Lululemon