Aéropostale (clothing)

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Aéropostale, Inc.
Public
Traded as OTC Pink: AROPQ
Industry Retail
Founded 1987
Headquarters New York City, New York, U.S.
Area served
Key people
Marc Miller (CEO)
Products Apparel & accessories
Number of employees
21,007 (January 31, 2015)[1]
Website www.aeropostale.com
Aéropostale store in Vaughan Mills, Vaughan, Ontario.
Aéropostale store in Promenade, Thornhill, Ontario.

Aéropostale, Inc. (occasionally known as AERO) is an American shopping mall-based specialty retailer of casual apparel and accessories, principally targeting ages 14-to-17-year-old teens through its Aéropostale stores (although adults 18 and up wear the clothing as well) and 4-to-12-year-old children through its P.S. from Aéropostale stores.[2] Aéropostale maintains control over its proprietary brands by designing, sourcing, marketing and selling all of its own merchandise. The company operates Aéropostale stores in the United States and Puerto Rico and the e-commerce site aeropostale.com. Aéropostale's licensees operate Aéropostale and P.S. from Aéropostale locations in the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. The first Aéropostale stores were opened in 1987 by Macy's in Thousand Oaks California and Short Hills, New Jersey.

Pronunciation[edit]

Many different pronunciations of the brand name have developed in the United States: arrow-PAUSE-tall, arrow-PUS-tall-ee, YOR-oh-POHS-tal-AY, etc., but according to a video posted by the company on YouTube, the English pronunciation is a simplified version of the French word, which means "French airmail service." In French, it's /a e ʁɔ pɔs ˈtal/. In English, it's /ˌɛər oʊ poʊ ˈstɒl/ or, in spelling pronunciation, "arrow-post-ALL."[3]

Subsidiaries[edit]

To leverage the strength of the Aéropostale teen brand, the company has expanded its namesake chain to a new chain called P.S. from Aéropostale, geared at children. P.S. from Aéropostale began in 2009, and originally only offered apparel at value prices to the 7–12 age market.[4] In winter of 2011, P.S. added apparel for three-, four-, five- and six-year-olds to their collections, being introduced with the Holiday clothings. Beginning in November 2013, the Bethany Mota collection was added to Aéropostale stores, featuring clothing and accessories designed by American video blogger Bethany Mota. Also beginning in the fall of 2013, the Live Love Dream collection (LLD) was added to Aéropostale stores. Live Love Dream features lounge and activewear geared to girls. The company also offered a secondary brand called Jimmy'Z that focused on surf and skater clothing. The 14 stores were branded as more upscale with higher price points than its parent chain. The company closed all Jimmy'Z in fiscal 2009.[5][6] In October 2014, the company launched their latest collection, United XXVI, which features clothing with an edgier look. The company works with video bloggers Nash Grier, Hayes Grier, and Cameron Dallas to create these looks based on the type of clothing the boys enjoy.

Aéropostale has currently following brands for girls:

  • Bethany Mota
  • Free State
  • Hobie
  • Invite Only
  • Junie & Jade
  • Live Love Dream
  • Lorimer
  • Map to Mars
  • The Bikini Lab
  • Tokyo Darling
  • United XXVI

And for boys:

  • Brooklyn Calling
  • Free State
  • United XXVI

Competition[edit]

Aéropostale mainly competes with other outfitters, Abercrombie & Fitch and its subsidiary retailer Hollister Co., and American Eagle Outfitters as well as a few smaller brands. Aéropostale's younger brand, P.S. from Aéropostale, competes with brands such as A&F's younger subsidiary Abercrombie kids and, formerly, American Eagle's 77kids.

Promotions[edit]

In 2007, the company began doing promotions with successful figures to increase brand awareness. The first promotion was selling the Fall Out Boy album Infinity on High with a store-exclusive T-shirt. Other offers include a free beach towel with every $50 purchase and a free Christmas bear with a purchase of over $100, each promotion in its respective season. These Christmas bears are also donated by Aéropostale stores to local charities in their respective communities. In 2008, Aéropostale, along with not-for-profit youth organization Do Something, launched "Teens for Jeans", a campaign to raise awareness of teen homelessness. Stores would collect lightly used jeans and donate them to local charities. In return, donators received a 20% (2008) or 25% (2009) discount on a new pair of Aéropostale jeans. In 2008, the campaign raised over 125,000 pairs of jeans. In their fifth year they collected over a million pairs in 2012. In 2008 and 2009, Aéropostale donated 10,000 pairs of new jeans to the campaign.[7][8]

In 2010, after the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti, for every pair of jeans that was donated by customers, Aéropostale sent a brand new pair to Haiti. In 2015, the company teamed up with British pop band The Vamps to promote awareness. The school with the most jeans collected received a private concert from the band. There were over 82,000 participants and the company raised 722,072 pairs of jeans in total. Also they promoted the show Greek Season 1 DVD with a free T-shirt with a $50 purchase. In the same year, Aéropostale organized Real Teen contest to discover new talent among teenagers. The top 8 winners of the contest received $5,000 personal college scholarship.[9] In April 2011, Aéropostale partnered with Black Eyed Peas to sell exclusive T-shirts and CDs.[10] Proceeds from these items benefit the Peapod Foundation, a charity which "helps children worldwide through music." Additionally, Aéropostale has pledged $100,000 to the organization.

Aéropostale also gives aid their employees through a program called Aero Cares. Aero Cares is another not-for-profit organization and is funded voluntarily by the Aéropostale employees. The purpose of the organization is to help any employee during times of extreme financial hardship or need resulting from personal tragedy.

Awards and honors[edit]

The company was named by Fortune magazine as one of the top 100 companies to work for in 2013.[11]

Legal issues[edit]

  • In March 2007, Aéropostale was accused of infringing a patent owned by Card Activation Technologies, Inc. in a lawsuit filed in the Northern District of Illinois.[12] In a separate lawsuit on the same patent, Card Activation received a ruling on claim construction which it interpreted as "extremely favorable" to its interpretation of the patent and its "pursuit of infringers" of the patent.[13]
  • In June 2007, Aéropostale was accused of infringing a patent owned by Picture Patents, LLC in a lawsuit filed in the Southern District of New York.[14]
  • In July 2009, Aéropostale was accused of infringing a patent owned by Furnace Brook, LLC in a lawsuit filed in the Northern District of Illinois.[15]
  • Executive Vice President and Chief Merchandising Officer Christopher Finazzo was terminated in November 2006 after an investigation by the Board of Directors revealed that he had concealed and failed to disclose personal and business interests with South Bay Apparel, a major vendor. The SEC issued an investigation on the Finazzo matter in January 2008. A criminal indictment was unsealed and announced June 11, 2010 in U.S. Court in Brooklyn, NY charging Finazzo and Doug Dey, the owner of South Bay with wire and mail fraud conspiracy.[16][17] Finazzo was convicted on 16 counts, including 14 counts of mail fraud and one each for wire fraud and conspiracy on April 25, 2013.[18]

2016 Bankruptcy[edit]

After thirteen consecutive quarters of losses, the company was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange on April 22, 2016, and began trading under the symbol AROP as an over-the-counter stock.

Aéropostale filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on May 4, 2016, with assets of $354 million.[19] The company closed 113 of its 739 U.S. stores and all 41 (in addition to 20 already closed prior to the filing) in Canada, the majority of which were unprofitable and responsible for the company's losses.[20][21] USA Today made a list of all of the US stores closing as part of its bankruptcy.[22]

The company exited bankruptcy in September 2016, after a $243 million bid from a consortium of licensing firm Authentic Brands Group, mall operators Simon Property Group and General Growth Properties, and capital-investment firms Gordon Brothers and Hilco. By January 2017 Aéropostale had reopened over 500 stores under its new management.[23][24]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Aéropostale, Form 10-K, Annual Report, Filing Date Mar 30, 2015". sec.gov. Retrieved September 26, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Aéropostale, Form 10-Q, Quarterly Report, Filing Date Dec 3, 2012". secdatabase.com. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  3. ^ "How do you say Aéropostale?". YouTube. Aéropostale. Retrieved 20 October 2017. 
  4. ^ "Aéropostale, Form 8-K, Current Report, Filing Date Mar 13, 2009". secdatabase.com. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Aéropostale, Form 8-K, Current Report, Filing Date Mar 10, 2005". secdatabase.com. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Aéropostale, Form 10-K, Annual Report, Filing Date Mar 29, 2010". secdatabase.com. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Aeropostale Partners with Do hi Something to Launch Teens for Jeans" (Press release). Aéropostale. January 16, 2008. Archived from the original on January 13, 2010. Retrieved March 11, 2009. 
  8. ^ "Over 200,000 Teens Expected to Donate Jeans for Homeless Teens" (Press release). Aéropostale. January 26, 2009. Archived from the original on January 13, 2010. Retrieved March 11, 2009. 
  9. ^ "Aéropostale Scholarship". Archived from the original on October 15, 2011. Retrieved September 6, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Aéropostale and The Black Eyed Peas". Retrieved May 31, 2011. 
  11. ^ "100 Best Companies to Work For 2013 - Aéropostale - Fortune". CNN. 
  12. ^ "Card Activation Technologies Inc v. Barnes & Noble Inc et al :: Justia Dockets & Filings". Dockets.justia.com. March 2, 2007. Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Card Activation Technologies, Inc. Receives Ruling on Claims Construction Issues". Reuters. September 14, 2009. 
  14. ^ "Picture Patents, LLC. v. Aeropostale, Inc. :: Justia Dockets & Filings". Dockets.justia.com. Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Furnace Brook LLC v. Aeropostale, Inc. et al :: Justia Dockets & Filings". Dockets.justia.com. Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  16. ^ "2009 Annual Report, p. 44–45". Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Former clothing execs face fraud charges". just-style.com. June 15, 2010. 
  18. ^ "Ex-Aeropostale Executive Found Guilty in Vendor Deal". Bloomberg. April 25, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Aeropostale Inc. Chapter 11 Petition" (PDF). PacerMonitor. PacerMonitor. Retrieved 9 May 2016. 
  20. ^ Mclean, Rob (May 4, 2016). "Teen retailer Aeropostale has filed for bankruptcy". CNNMoney. Retrieved May 4, 2016. 
  21. ^ Goenka, Himanshu (May 4, 2016). "Aéropostale (AROP) Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection". International Business Times. Retrieved May 4, 2016. 
  22. ^ Bomey, Nathan (May 4, 2016). "Will your Aéropostale close? Here's the list". USA Today. Retrieved May 4, 2016. 
  23. ^ Wahba, Phil (September 13, 2016). "Aéropostale Won't Go Out of Business After All". Fortune. Retrieved February 10, 2018. 
  24. ^ Wilson, Marianne (January 11, 2017). "Teen apparel retailer reopens 500-plus stores". Chain Store Age. Retrieved February 10, 2018. 

External links[edit]