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American Eagle CEO Says Quiet Logistics Helped Counter Inflation

American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) said it has completed the acquisition of Quiet Logistics and strategic investments for approximately $360 million in cash.

Quiet Logistics is a logistics company that operates a network of in-market fulfillment centers in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, St. Louis and Jacksonville, locating products closer to need, creating inventory efficiencies, cost benefits and affordable same-day and next-day delivery options to customers and stores.

“I am thrilled to officially welcome Quiet Logistics into the AEO Inc. portfolio, cementing a collaborative partnership that has meaningfully contributed to our financial results over the past 18 months,” said Jay Schottenstein, AEO’s executive chairman of the board and CEO.

“AEO’s unique ability to reduce delivery costs amid rising inflation is a direct reflection of the efficiencies provided by their innovative fulfillment model,” Schottenstein added. “Quiet Logistics has a highly experienced supply chain leadership team and I look forward to their partnership as we continue to drive operational excellence and grow the platform into a meaningful business.”

Quiet Logistics will be a wholly owned AEO subsidiary and will continue to run its business independently. The network will support AEO’s continued growth, while also driving economies of scale as it expands its customer base to other brands and retailers seeking advanced logistics capabilities.

Quiet Logistics is a rapidly growing operator of state-of-the-art in-market fulfillment centers and serves more than 50 leading direct-to-consumer and omnichannel brands. Quiet has a focus on urbanization, automation and access to labor pools outside of traditional distribution center hubs to benefit its customers. The acquisition builds the supply chain focus AEO demonstrated with its deal for AirTerra, the startup founded by Nordstrom veteran Brent Beabout.

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“At the end of the day the trend that’s happening out here—I think AEO is just the front end of that—is that front-end retailers can compete all they want on service, selection and price,” Beabout said during October’s Sourcing Journal Summit. “But on the back end, they’re going to have to become ‘frenemies,’ and actually combine their resources of the back end, allowing them to be competitive against the big guys going forward.”

AEO operates American Eagle and Aerie stores in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Hong Kong, and ships to 81 countries worldwide through its websites. American Eagle and Aerie merchandise also is available at more than 200 international locations operated by licensees in 33 countries.

Last month, ShopRunner expanded same-day delivery for American Eagle and Aerie brands, offering the service to 101 additional stores across the U.S. This brought the number of AEO stores to 151 in 41 states since the program began in October 2020. AEO is the first specialty apparel retailer on the ShopRunner platform, acquired by FedEx in late 2020, to offer same-day delivery.