Will Gap Help Intermix Expand and Launch Its Own Line?

Gap's longtime turnaround efforts seem to finally be yielding some positive results. So much so that another retailer might be looking to it for help.
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Dhani Mau
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Gap's longtime turnaround efforts seem to finally be yielding some positive results. So much so that another retailer might be looking to it for help.
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Gap's longtime turnaround efforts seem to finally be yielding some positive results. So much so that another retailer might be looking to it for help.

Gap, Inc. is in talks with contemporary specialty boutique Intermix to embark on a not-yet-defined partnership. Khajak Keledjian, founder and chief executive officer of Intermix, told WWD, “Intermix is currently in discussions with Gap Inc. We are excited to potentially align with this iconic retailer to capitalize on the significant growth potential within the luxury market."

A spokesman for Gap said they're "excited by the brand’s business model and strong customer loyalty. And the luxury market offers significant growth potential within retail."

So what do the two retailers stand to gain from one another?

Where Intermix, which has 33 stores nation-wide, might excel at merchandising and customer service, Gap's strengths lie in advertising, mass production capabilities, a massive, international reach, and e-commerce.

WWD speculates that the partnership could yield a first-ever in-house line for Intermix:

[Intermix] hasn’t ruled out the possibility of working with a partner that also has some sourcing experience that can help Intermix launch its own private label.

That’s where Gap could come in and provide some expert merchandising and retail know-how, whether across the U.S. market or internationally, and even in the e-commerce arena, presuming the parties are able to reach an agreement.

That would make sense--in house lines have become increasingly popular for speciality retailers and can be a good profit generator.

E-commerce also seems like an area in which Intermix could improve (its site only carries a very limited selection of products), but it has some pretty stiff competition in Shopbop and Net-a-Porter.

Gap isn't necessarily at the top of the affordable mass retail game and Intermix isn't necessarily at the top of the contemporary specialty retail game, but they're both doing fine and perhaps together, they'll be able to give their competition a run for their money.