Lucy Activewear, a women’s sports and lifestyle apparel company started by former Nike executives in the late 1990s, announced that it will be closing a majority of its stores over the next few months and merging the brand with North Face.
The story was first reported by KGW news in Portland, Oregon, and said that one reason for the store closings is tougher competition in the activewear category, including by companies like Athleta, Lululemon and Fabletics.
"Just in the last eight years, the growth in competition has really been intense from a lot of brands – existing brands, newcomers, ready-to-wear brands that have branched out into athletic wear," said Dawn Dzedzy, Lucy spokesperson to KGW.
Both Lucy and North Face are owned by parent company VF, which is why the Lucy brand will be folded into the more known brand name. It was not stated whether the Lucy name and brand would remain after the merger.
Most of Lucy’s 44 stores will remain open through the fall of 2017, stated the story, but the company’s intention is that all will close by the end of the year or very early in 2018. Many of the store closure dates are based on lease timings.
Employees were told of the decision to close stores late last week.
Lucy Activewear began in 1999 as an online shop and opened its first retail location in 2002. It relocated its headquarters from Portland to San Leandro, California in 2010. With in-store retail sales down nationwide, this continues a trend of store closings that shows no signs of slowing.