Gap Inc. has just announced they will no longer be sponsoring the annual CFDa/Vogue Fashion Fund, the scholarship they've been involved with since 2007. This year, J. Crew will be taking the reigns as chief sponsor of the scholarship and much talked about campaign. That means, gently-priced designs by the nominees (who in the past have included Vena Cava, Rodarte and Alexander Wang) will now be showing up on J. Crew's shelves instead of Gap's. I especially loved the classic white shirt collab of 2008 that brought out the creative minds behind Band of Outsiders, threeASFOUR, and of course, 3.1 Phillip Lim. Let's hope J. Crew's signature preppy aesthetic can bring back something like that. Ann Taylor will also join the festivities this year by funding an October fashion show in Los Angeles, where models will feature the nominees' designs created for J. Crew.
So is Gap feeling a little left out now? Not likely. The retailer that's long been a household name in American fashion has been setting its sights on bigger and better things, such as expanding its influence globally online. The San Francisco-based company said its planning to have e-commerce capabilities that will extend to 65 countries by the year's end, marking the e-commerce debut of Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime and Athleta outside of the U.S. With the expansion, Gap’s online presence will touch more of the globe than the company’s actual stores since Gap is currently in five countries with company-owned units and 20 with franchised units. Other stores, like Old Navy, have no stores beyond North America at all.
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Gap has partnered with FiftyOne, a New York-based e-commerce specialist, to develop the online foundation needed to support a Web business around the world, with the exception of China. For China, Gap is working with Shanghai Yi Shang Network Information Co. Ltd. to provide e-commerce services starting this fall. So it seems Gap's old business plan read something like, today: CFDA/Vogue Fashion Find; tomorrow: the world!
Article Source: Fashionista, WWD
Photo Source: shopaholic.ro