Under Armour is attempting to turn itself around following an earnings report for the fourth quarter that did not meet expectations.
The sports apparel brand, which just recently launched in Kohl’s the mid-price department stores known for deep discounting has now entered into a new agreement with DSW the discount shoe retailer.
This deal is a collaboration that will result in unique products for the DSW stores, said DSW chief merchandising officer and vice chairperson Debbie Ferree.
Analysts are worried the move could affect the brand perception of Under Armour, especially for its struggling, yet still-new footwear line.
One analyst on Wall Street said Monday that it is tough for Under Armour because they need new distribution points. The new deal with DSW he added was a double-edged sword because they must grow, but by doing so, there is a possibility of the brand image being compromised.
The thought is that the brand might not be cool any longer, said one analyst and the deal with DSW could exacerbate that more.
Kevin Plank, the Under Armour CEO praised Donald Trump and that makes it close to impossible to establish a cool lifestyle brand for the foreseeable future, said an industry research company.
The company does not believe the brand will end up losing its footwear deal with Stephen Curry the reigning two-time NBA MVP.
However, it is not good for your business when the biggest faces of the company such as Curry, Misty Copeland and Dwayne Johnson spoke out against the comments made by the Under Armour CEO.
According to one sports analyst, younger shoppers give a great deal of thought to the moral implications involved when they decide where to spend their money.
Generation Z and Millennials want retailers and brands that are transparent about where they stand on many social issues, said the analyst. If the values do not align with their own views, they take their business to another brand.
In response to criticism from the comments Plank made, Under Armour sent out two individual statements and an open letter that was a full page in the Baltimore Sun in an attempt to clarify the words and to come out against the executive order of President Trump involving the travel ban.
These types of issues are combining with other concerns about mistakes Under Armour made, which have contributed to slower growth making for a difficult time at the once rapidly growing new star in sports apparel.
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