Ralph Lauren's return to preppy chic bears fruit

05/feb/2018 04:11:26 davisyellow Contatta l'autore

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Ralph Lauren's return to preppy chic bears fruit

favour among younger shoppers today?

In the last century, he built a business empire by sketching out a national fashion identity with each design.

In recent years, though, the influence of his preppy styles has waned. Sales have fallen steadily as shoppers move on to casual wear, fast-fashion or upstart preppy brands.

Now, the 78-year-old is trying to stitch together a comeback strategy. Mr Patrice Louvet, his latest chief executive officer, is helping to lead the charge to reclaim the prestige the brand once enjoyed.

The strategy is to go back in time. Products that are not key to that effort are getting culled, while core items are getting refreshed.

Old styles, labels and symbols are going to be resuscitated.

Ms Bridget Weishaar, an analyst at Morningstar, praises the strategy, especially the decision to jettison some items.

In recent years, the company has pushed all sorts of labels - Ralph Lauren, Polo Ralph Lauren, Ralph By Ralph Lauren, Lauren Ralph Lauren and Double RL.

There was even something called Denim & Supply Ralph Lauren, but that was discontinued.

"They just had so many sub-brands that it got confusing," said Ms Weishaar.

Lauren stepped down as chief executive officer in 2015, but retains major influence as the creative force behind the brand. He brought in Mr Stefan Larsson, a veteran retail executive from Gap's Old Navy.

In a two-hour presentation to analysts and investors the following summer, Lauren admitted the company had gone astray.

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