Today we take a closer look at a new round of store closures, the first President of buzzing accessories label Mansur Gavriel, and how Planned Parenthood got into New York Fashion Week: Men’s. Enjoy the read and feel free to share! Best, Ulrike


Closing time. As part of its restructuring, US kids wear retailer Gymboree Corporation is going to close about 350 of its 1,281 stores, leaving it with about 930 locations. Most of the closings affect the Gymboree and Crazy 8 concepts. Last month, Gymboree filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.


M&S stock sinks. As Britain's largest apparel retailer cut back (paywall) on discounts in Q1, its clothing and home unit saw same-store sales drop 1.2%. Although CEO Steve Rowe claims that M&S is on track with its turnaround plan, it keeps losing market share to fast fashion chains. Disappointed investors sent the stock down 4.8% on Tuesday.


About EU. German fashion start-up About You is expanding in Europe. In October, the three-year-old retail platform plans to launch in Belgium and The Netherlands, with more countries to follow (in German) before the end of the year. About You belongs to Otto Group’s eCommerce subsidiary Collins and cooperates with third party retailers including several Otto-owned chains like Sportscheck and Mirapodo.


From Aerie to Amazon. Online giant Amazon is planning its third bookstore in Manhattan. The two-story, 700 sqm location in Soho is currently home to a pop-up shop for American Eagle’s lingerie brand, Aerie. In May, Amazon opened its first Manhattan store in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle and will soon open a second one at Herald Square.


Boss lady. Accessory label Mansur Gavriel has hired its first president, Shira Sue Carmi. The founder of New York-based consulting company Launch Collective is supposed to help expand the buzzing shoe and handbag label into ready-to-wear.


Deal in progress. Embattled hosiery company Wolford was able to extend (in German) existing credit lines with its Austrian lenders to June 2018 and secured additional bridge financing in the amount of €10 million. This should cover funding for the current fiscal year, while the Bregenz-based company is looking for a majority investor.

Done deal. New York accessories company Coach Inc has completed the acquisition of Kate Spade & Co which will be operated as a subsidiary. Meanwhile, a Kate Spade shareholder has hit the company with a books and records request over the $2.4 billion acquisition, alleging that the deal undervalued the fashion house.


Man in the middle. Facing the need for continued store closures, distressed US retailers rely increasingly (paywall) on specialized lease consultants to help extricate themselves out of ongoing leases or negotiate better terms with landlords. Especially operators of weaker malls (paywall) are often willing to amend leases.


Political point. Planned Parenthood pins were already a must-have accessory at the recent Tony Awards. Now, the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) has partnered with the organization to issue pins for New York Fashion Week: Mens. A proposed Senate bill currently threatens to defund the organization which serves about 2.4 million people per year.


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