Hollister’s lingerie brand Gilly Hicks is attempting to make a major comeback, starting with pop-up stores.
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Abercrombie & Fitch announced Monday it will be opening four pop-up stores for Gilly Hicks, run under the company’s California-themed brand, after the intimates line was resurrected in 2017 “due to customer demand.”
“These Gilly Hicks pop-ups introduce new, engaging experiences for our customers, and create greater brand awareness. As part of our test-and-learn approach, we’re looking forward to seeing how customers respond to Gilly in these unique and innovative formats,” Abercrombie’s global brands president Kristin Scott said in a news release.
The stores, which opened this past week, are located at Tysons Corner Center in Tysons, Va., the Dolphin Mall in Miami, Fla., Macerich’s Los Cerritos Center in Cerritos, Calif., and Baybrook Mall in Friendswood, Tex. The company already has two other locations at Ala Moana Center in Honolulu, H.I., and Roosevelt Field in Garden City, N.Y. All global Hollister stores carry the lingerie brand.
The pop-up locations will cater to Gilly Hicks’ updated format that still follows Hollister’s surfer style but with “subtle color shifts and modern touches.” The stores will have some personalized touchs to match the city they’re in.
Abercrombie said its planning to open more Gilly Hicks pop-ups, but did not provide further details on when and where.
The company closed all 28 Gilly Hicks stores in 2013 after launching the brand in 2008. The brand nearly disappeared until 2017 when Abercrombie began adding some of its intimate pieces back to Hollister stores and online, CNBC reported.
The pop-ups come nearly two months after the company said it would be closing three more flagship stores — a Hollister in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood and Abercrombie & Fitch locations in Milan, Italy and Fukuoka, Japan — by end of the year or first half of 2020. Gilly Hicks, however, is also staging a comeback while Victoria's Secret struggles to boost sales as other brands gain momentum.
The retailer’s CEO, Fran Horowitz, said Abercrombie will focus on opening smaller shops and renovating some of its existing locations to keep customers coming back. The move comes amid the rise of e-commerce outlets that led to a significant reduction in foot traffic to retail stores, CNBC reported.
“What we’ve learned from the consumer is they are really enjoying the smaller spaces,” Horowitz told CNBC. “There is a more intimate feel to it…and the customer likes that one-on-one interaction.”