Over the last year, Judith Ripka has shut most of its retail locations, as it reorients its retail strategy toward a mix of brick-and-mortar locations and shop-in-shops.
The only stores it is leaving open are its store in Long Island, N.Y., and its store on East 62nd Street and Madison Avenue in New York City. It has shut its other store on Madison Avenue, two outlets in Florida, as well as stores in Chicago and Las Vegas.
“The other stores were not performing,” says Robert D’Loren, chairman and CEO of Xcel Brands, which bought the brand in April. “The stores that they had couldn’t have made money under any circumstances. They were just the wrong locations, the wrong footprints.”
He says that when the company refines its product mix, it will decide on a retail strategy.
“We have to get the right product out there and then turn the marketing engine back on,” says D’Loren. “You can’t do your own store unless you have the operating metrics right.”
He says the brand will soon be back in Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, and likely Saks Fifth Avenue. It also plans to expand the line to other accessories, including handbags, evening bags, and footwear.