Showpo Gets Physical in LA

For the first time since closing Showpo’s local bricks-and-mortar stores back in 2013, the women’s fashion brand is opening a “physical brand presence” in the US. Located on Melrose Avenue in the heart of LA, the pop up will sit alongside popular retail destinations, such as Nike’s experiential commerce store, Nike by Melrose.

Speaking to Power Retail, Showpo’s Brand Manager, Rosalie Molloy said the decision to open a pop-up in LA has stemmed from the brand’s success in the region, as well as a desire to increase its international marketing activities.

“The USA has experienced a 48 percent YOY growth for us,” she says, joking that as a leading market, California is like “its own country” for the fashion e-tailer. “Our audience, in particular, crave novelty brand experiences and social moments to connect with a brand, so our pop-up is a vessel to engage our existing USA market. A marketing channel rather than a purely traditional retail channel,” she explains.

Running from March 9 until March 17, the pop-up will be open from 11 am to 7 pm daily and will stock selected apparel and accessories from its full-size range, size four to 20.

“[The store] provides our audience with the opportunity to try different sizes and styles without the logistics that come with the otherwise convenient online shopping format. As an immersive space, we hope our customers delight in stepping into the Showpo world, even if it’s only for a limited time.

Since closing Showpo’s bricks-and-mortar stores to focus on the business’s online channels, the company’s Founder and CEO, Jane Lu has shown little interest in re-entering the physical retail market on a permanent basis. However, in an interview with Power Retail in late 2018, she did hint that pop-up locations could be on the horizon.

“I can’t see a permanent shopfront anywhere in the near horizon, but can definitely see the benefits of a pop-up strategy that would totally be marketing play, rather than a sales channel,” she said.

Since its initial launch in the US in 2017, Molloy says that Showpo experienced initial growth in the region organically but has since made strategic and structural changes to the brand’s product stock mix and sourcing strategy. This recently led to investing in a US-based investment centre.

Open for nine days, Showpo’s pop-up is part of the company’s broader strategy for bridging the gap between retail and technology for a “seamless customer experience”.

After its recent wins for Top Social Retailer and Best Marketing Initiative at Power Retail’s 2019 All Star Bash, and its strong YOY revenue growth, Showpo is reportedly on track to meet its goal of $100 million in revenue by 2020, with no external funding.

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