Every season or so, there is some sort of detailed report on the progress of always almost-bankrupt retailer American Apparel. This morning, Dov and his empire are the subject of a WWD piece, the focus of which is AA’s forthcoming e-commerce shop on eBay. However, the online shop-in-shop is only one of several efforts the company is making to increase business. The retailer is also in talks to bring this shop-in-shop method to real life with leased spaces in Bloomingdale’s.
American Apparel is also set to open three additional leased spaces in Selfridges stores in the U.K. And, in a short time, most college apparel could have American Apparel’s signature Made in USA tags on the inside. They’re reportedly close to sealing a deal that could see them supplying clothes for up to 2,500 campuses.
Numbers were looking OK for AA back in May. It really seems like, if all goes according to plan, Dov & co. could finally actually be on the right track.
American Apparel’s latest bailout from a Canadian investor group, which came just in time for the company to avoid a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, could even be their last, at least for a while. The eBay shop, set to launch in in September, is part of an overall strategy to expand distribution beyond American Apparel’s own stores and e-commerce.
It’s not the first time American Apparel has sold its own merchandise via eBay–they used to sell pieces from their California Select vintage collection in a special eBay store, which no longer exists–perhaps because it will become part of the new e-commerce shop.
It makes sense. Charney explains to WWD, “There are more than 30,000 searches for American Apparel on eBay each month and right now those customers are not buying from us directly.” Those kinds of figures are probably true of several clothing brands, so it makes sense that eBay is rumored to be launching a whole platform for similar dedicated brand stores.
The company appears to be expanding in the right directions and Dov’s internet smear campaigns and sexual harassment charges seem to have calmed down for now (Irene Morales’ $260 million law suit is still pending). Of course, if they do screw up yet again, it seems there will always, inexplicably, be some investor willing to keep them afloat.