Gap Inc’s Athleta brand has arrived in the UK and Ireland with a launch this week as part of the US giant’s wider deal with Next. The performance and lifestyle brand for women and girls, is now shoppable via Next.co.uk and Next.ie.
Certified B Corporation Athleta offers “versatile, premium performance apparel which is designed by women for women”.
The 25-year-old brand integrates performance and technical features across its collection “to support women across their entire lifestyle” and earlier this year also announced a “holistic partnership” with singer/songwriter Alicia Keys “to further their mutual commitment to women’s well-being”.
It’s a strong message to deliver as it launches in the British and Irish markets on International Women’s Day.
The brand is debuting with a selection of over 100 styles, including quick-drying, breathable sweat tops, joggers, and shorts, all-way stretch leggings, sports bras, tank tops and waterproof outerwear.
Gap and Next originally launched their joint venture is 2021 to grow Gap’s UK business “through a strong local partnership” after its earlier exit from directly-operated stores in the market.
The two companies said that after the launching the Gap and Banana Republic brands, “the arrival of Athleta on Next.co.uk signifies the strength and effectiveness of the franchise partnership”.
Next previously opened a Gap branded shop-in-shop within the Next store on London’s Oxford Street, followed by shop-in-shops in Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and Thurrock, while the Gap.co.uk site migrated to the Next Total Platform in August 2022.
Banana Republic launched with a curated collection for women and men, on the Next webstore in November 2022.
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