NEW YORK — Charles Jebara is taking junior denim brand Z Co. into the world of online retailing.
Jebara, founder of Brand Resource Ltd., which owns the label, is looking to capitalize on the brand's stronger-than-anticipated performance last year with the introduction of an Internet store in May.
"As tough as the overall business was in '07, we had a great year," said Jebara. "Part of our overall plan going forward is to punch up our online presence."
Jebara isn't letting concerns about a weakening retail environment rattle his confidence. In July, he estimated Z Co. would generate $30 million in sales. However, after a strong finish to 2007, he predicted the brand will far exceed his initial estimate.
"We're going to blow that away this year," he said. "We're looking at $50 million for 2008."
While any additional sales generated through the Web site will be welcome, Jebara said the brand stands to gain the most by using it as a marketing tool and proving ground for new product. It's a strategy he thinks better addresses the target 16- to 18-year-old market and changing nature of advertising.
"We don't believe in traditional advertising," he said. "I think 10 years ago, if you were in the juniors business, you needed to advertise in the junior teen magazines."
However, the proliferation of celebrity weeklies such as Us Weekly and In Touch has eaten into the teen magazine demographic, said Jebara, weakening their impact on the Z Co. consumer. It's also more difficult than ever to stand out among the crowd by going with traditional marketing.
"I feel like we get lost out there and I don't think that's what drives a junior customer to buy a jean," he said.
Z Co. is sold in about 4,000 department and specialty stores across the U.S., and the brand is already working with several online retailers. Jebara hopes to avoid damaging those relationships and cannibalizing the company's sales by offering exclusive styles on the site. He plans to offer links that will allow customers to purchase products from the brand's other online retail partners.The site will also test new products. Jebara said that, if one of the exclusive styles begins to take off online, he would have no problem offering the style to the brand's retailers.
"The more interest we generate in our brand and our product, I think our customers will benefit greatly," he said. "It's going to be a limited business and it could prove to be a great testing ground for retailers, as well. We'll be happy to share that with our retailers."
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)