Nordstrom to buy stake in UK online retailer Asos
(Photo: Pablo Cuadra/Getty Images).
AMERICAN luxury store chain Nordstrom announced to buy a minority stake in the British online fashion retailer Asos unit that owns Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT, The New York Times reported.
Asos acquired the unit out of bankruptcy earlier this year. It bought brands including Topshop for roughly £265 million.
Nordstrom will also start a partnership with Asos to bring the British retailer’s brands into department stores.
The announcement has come at a time, when national chains, especially department stores, scramble to attract a generation of shoppers.
The deal is important as Nordstrom has been trying to shed its association with other mall-based department stores and recover after a tough year. It has also been working to better link its digital operations with its physical stores.
The company’s sales fell 32 per cent to $10.4 billion (£7.5bn) in the year ending January 30, compared with the previous year.
“There’s a big opportunity for us to be more meaningful to 20-something customers and to young customers,” Peter Nordstrom, the president of the namesake chain and its chief brand officer, told the newspaper.
“Particularly with the pandemic, what we thought was going to happen with the online business over time ended up happening very quickly because stores were shut down,” Nordstrom said.
Meanwhile, Asos never had a physical store presence.
The company that targets customers in their 20s is based in England, but North America accounts for about 13 per cent of its global sales, according to Nick Beighton, the chief executive of Asos.
The brand plans to stay focused on that specific age group. “We don’t want to grow old with our customers,” Beighton said.
“We’re not great at running stores; we’re great at innovating through digital and creating amazing brands and products,” he added.