Dick’s Sporting Goods Turns To Women To Fuel New Growth

On the latest episode of the E-Commerce Retail Briefing podcast:

Dick’s Sporting Goods is shifting its focus. After hitting a sales slump, the retailer is now building out its private label brands and targeting the health-conscious woman to fuel new growth.

  • Foot Locker announced its investment in e-commerce and content platform, NTWRK. NTWRK has partnered with brands like Nike and New Balance and collaborated with several celebrities for product releases. Foot Locker and Live Nation led the investment round, with the Series A funding totaling $10 million. Foot Locker invested $3 million in the e-commerce platform. The investment indicates Foot Locker is looking to maintain its relevance among younger shoppers.
  • As the resale market continues to grow, more brands are looking for their way into the industry. Startup, Yerdle, which announced raising a $20 million round of venture capital financing last week, has created a white-label service that retailers like REI, Eileen Fisher, and Patagonia have used to build out their resale services that pull from their own inventory. Mark Cross, a luxury handbag company, also announced plans to launch its own resale platform later this year.
  • According to a report from Bloomberg, Walmart has been talking with potential buyers for its concierge service, JetBlack. Walmart officially announced the text-based service a little over a year ago. Walmart’s openness to selling JetBlack not too long after its launch is a testament to the growing pains its online business is experiencing. A sale of JetBlack could also further cost-cutting initiatives Walmart is reportedly considering. The company is facing a $1 billion loss on its e-commerce operations and may sell some of its recently acquired brands.

Dick’s Sporting Goods Looks To Women In New Growth Strategy

After experiencing a sales slump in recent quarters, Dick’s Sporting Goods is focusing on their women’s selection to fuel new growth. However, the retailer is also competing with brands like Lululemon, Outdoor Voices, and Gap’s Athleta, all of which are targeting the same demographic. Dick’s Sporting Goods women’s brand, Calia, launched nearly five years ago and is now one of the top two women’s apparel brands in stores based on sales. The sporting goods retailer also launched in-house brand, DSG, last month that includes an expanded women’s line.

In their strategy shift, the retailer is leaning more heavily on its private-label brands, which they expect to reach $2 billion in sales over time. For Dick’s Sporting Goods, Calia offers a good example of what they can accomplish. Within five years, they were able to scale the brand to all of the company’s stores and is now one of the retailer’s top brands. Some analysts are applauding the retailer’s efforts, noting that focusing on building private label brands gives the company an extra degree of control. 

A Vice President of the company said that they’ve always had women in mind, but the past two years, the conversation has been about women being at the forefront. President Lauren Hobart said that women have complained in the past about the retailer having a lack of product selection for women. She said, “We’ve got our own private brands that we’re trying to use to address the issue … and we’re doing everything we can to get the national brands to meet it.”