Champion stakes bricks-and-mortar claim


Champion Athleticwear is celebrating its 100th anniversary by taking new ground. In addition to the opening of a 4,900-square-foot storefront on Broadway in New York’s famed SoHo shopping district in August, the brand opened its third U.S. location in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood in September.

The brand has traditionally relied on other retailers such as Target to sell its wares in the U.S. It has, however, seen success with bricks-and-mortar in Europe and Asia — as well as the opening of its first U.S. flagship store in Los Angeles earlier this year. Matt Waterman, vice president and general manager of Champion, told PSFK that authenticity was the cornerstone of the Champion brand, and that the motivation behind the physical location was to encourage more tactical engagement.

The New York location includes a specialized showroom that highlights the brand’s earliest innovations in addition to a customization booth where consumers can add Champion-branded embroideries and patches to garments. Champion, a brand of HanesBrands, is incorporating its re-entrance into footwear with the store, PSFK reports.

As for Chicago, the 1,900-square-foot location includes specialized products available only at that store, and onsite customization will feature Chicago-themed patches. Here, too, Champion’s heritage is on display. Champion was founded in 1919.



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