Fabletics announced that it will be expanding its brick and mortar presence by opening 75 new retail stores both in the U.S. and in other countries, expanding its global presence to 100 stores.
The stores will feature a new design that is being debuted in Bellevue, Washington, including a “high-tech payment processing system” plus a leggings bar and photo wall for people to try on clothes and take selfies.
The athleisure-wear company began as an online subscription-based business five years ago, and has since grown rapidly, competing with big-name brands like Lululemon, Nike, and Tory Burch Sport. Fabletics prides itself on fun and inclusive designs for all bodies, and offers a lower price point for customers. The company recently launched a new line of activewear for curvy and larger body types, incorporating fun colors and flattering styles to appeal to more consumers.
CNBC reported that the company had "rapidly surpassed $300 million in annual revenue" after just five years in business. Physical stores, which currently number 25, have achieved sales growth of 20 percent year-over-year.
Fabletics began with an innovative approach: offering subscriptions to online customers so they could have access to purchasing clothing for a cheaper price than most activewear retail brands (such as Lululemon). For example, even though Lululemon leggings and Fabletics leggings are made with the same amount of material, customers purchase one pair from Lululemon for $98 retail, whereas if you are a VIP subscriber to Fabletics, you can get two pair for $24. As a result of their aggressive marketing push and attractive price points, Fabletics has grown a dedicated fan base and was able to expand into brick and mortar stores.
"We are a digitally native company, so we've been able to really understand our customers — what they want, where they reside," co-founder Kate Hudson told CNBC. "At a time when people are very nervous about retail, [our customers] still want the retail shopping experience."
Taking a lead from Hudson, Fabletics has reached out to partner with other celebrities, including Demi Lovato, who has created her own fashions for the popular clothing brand and is a brand ambassador for the company.
Fabletics recently hired some retail powerhouses to grow its business, including Karen Pornillos from Lululemon and Nancy Arnold from Victoria's Secret. Fabletics plans to open its first retail store in the Philippines in the fall. More international stores are being planned for 2019, according to CNBC.
Fabletics is owned by Tech Style, who also owns popular digital brands Shoe Dazzle and JustFab.