Banana Republic to permanently shut websites in Europe - The Entrepreneurial Way with A.I.


Thursday, April 21, 2022

Banana Republic to permanently shut websites in Europe


Dive Brief:

  • Banana Republic is preparing to shut down its websites in Europe by the end of May. and are scheduled to close on May 31, the company confirmed to Retail Dive.
  • Customers may continue to shop on those sites until the close date. "We sincerely thank you for your loyalty and business," the company wrote in an announcement on the site.
  • "In 2020, we announced a strategic review of our Banana Republic company-operated e-commerce operations in Europe. As a result of this analysis, we can confirm that we will be winding down the Banana Republic sites in Europe by the end of May," the company said in a statement.

Dive Insight:

Gap Inc. is continuing to pull back on its presence in Europe.

In October 2020, the conglomerate said that it was beginning a strategic review of its business options in the region. The company then announced last July that it would shut down all its company-owned Gap and Gap Outlet stores in the U.K and Ireland. The Gap brand had a presence in the U.K. since 1987 and in Ireland since 2006.

Meanwhile, Banana Republic has been going through a time of transition. Last fall, the company said that it was revamping its brand identity to focus on "democratic, approachable and inclusive luxury."

At the time, then-chief brand officer Ana Andjelic was leading the effort to redefine the brand's positioning, a strategy that included modernizing its physical stores across the U.S. to align with its new identity through hospitality, styling services and "elevated merchandising." The company also pushed forward its intent to create a more immersive experience across its digital channels by using inspirational imagery, videos and music.

Two months after announcing the brand refocus, Andjelic left the company. She had been with Banana Republic less than a year.

In its latest earnings, Banana Republic reported that Q4 net sales were down 11% compared to 2019, with fiscal year 2021 sales down 18% compared to 2019. However, after the brand's relaunch the company saw average unit retail growth, higher basket size and an increase in higher income shoppers.

On a call with investors regarding the company's earnings, Gap Inc. CEO Sonia Syngal said the brand's repositioning efforts were taking hold and that it was "well on its way to $2 billion in revenue."


Kaarin Vembar, Khareem Sudlow