Xcel Brands will step up its speed-to-market next spring.
Inspired by the ever-changing selection of merchandise for sale at European fast-fashion giants H&M and Zara, the company has teamed up with Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor on a “groundbreaking” Quick Time Response business model that will help the department stores get a leg up on their low-cost competitors.
Under the deal, Xcel will design and manage the manufacturing of products for four of its brands, including Isaac Mizrahi’s IMNYC, H Halston and C. Wonder Limited, as well as a new label targeting Millennials and developed exclusively for this program.
Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor will be the exclusive retail partners in the U.S. and Canada, allowing them to manage assortments of inventory that quench consumers’ thirst for up-to-the-minute trends and styles. The collections will launch in Spring ’16.
Robert D’Loren, chairman and CEO of Xcel, called the program a “much-needed inventory management solution” and thanked Ben Malka (who took over the storied House of Halston in 2011 and is also on Xcel’s board) and his team for “all of their collaborative work on this project.”
Xcel snapped up Halston’s two diffusion lines, H Halston and H by Halston, late last year for roughly $27.7 million—the latter currently sells on QVC—and the company added C. Wonder to its portfolio in July. Mizrahi, meanwhile, sold his namesake brand to Xcel four years ago.
Liz Rodbell, president of Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor noted, “This new business model will help us quickly react to what’s working and better serve our customers.”