18 Stories

Gap: Sorry for Black Girl as 'Armrest' in Ad

Critics say GapKids photo is racially insensitive—but there's a twist

(Newser) - A new Gap ad is causing a stir on social media for what critics say is a racist depiction of a young black girl, Fortune reports. The photo features the child and three white girls. While the two girls bookending the photo strike acrobatic poses, the white girl in the... More »

Girl With Down Syndrome Now a Gap Model

Kayla Kosmalski, 9, will make her debut today

(Newser) - Among the kids modeling for Gap today at a fashion show in Miami will be 9-year-old Kayla Kosmalski, and Kayla is making headlines because she's got Down syndrome. She's actually one of four kids in the show with a disability of some kind, part of a campaign called... More »

Hey Ikea and Gap, Your Raises Aren't That Great

Catherine Rampell: These 'baby steps' are fine, but we need a federal hike

(Newser) - Ikea and Gap have been busy patting themselves on the back of late for raising the minimum wage they pay their workers. The self-congratulation is a little much given the "baby steps" we're talking about here, writes Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post . Ikea, for instance, says it... More »

Gap Closing Scores of Stores

Pre-recession boom left surplus of shops

(Newser) - Gap, once the king of clothing chains, rapidly expanded before the recession; afterward, it found itself with more stores than shoppers. Now it plans to close 189 of its North American locations—more than a fifth of the total—by 2013, leaving some 700 remaining, the Wall Street Journal reports.... More »

Social Media Killed Gap's Logo

Case shows why Twitter, Facebook matter

(Newser) - Who says social media don't matter? Malcolm Gladwell, the New Yorker's "big-haired, big-brained and big-mouthed columnist," may think Twitter is a silly fad, but the Gap logo case says otherwise, writes Shane Richmond for the Telegraph . The retailer recently abandoned its cheap-looking new logo after an outcry online.... More »

Gap's New Logo Looks Ridiculously Cheap

This is an improvement?

(Newser) - The Gap rolled out a new logo this week with little fanfare. Unfortunately for the retailer, the response hasn't been so quiet. The biggest complaints seem to revolve around the use of Helvetica (yes, that hated font) lettering, and the decision to shrink the big navy box that used to... More »

Toddlers Squeeze Into Skinny Jeans

Diaper-friendly styles for kids setting retail trend

(Newser) - Chubby diaper-wearers and skinny jeans don't sound like a great combination but retailers say their lines for little kids are selling fast. Adult-style clothes for kids, including skinny jeans for tots as young as 3 months, have been helping keep the children's apparel sector healthy amid declining sales elsewhere. Retailers... More »

Struggling Gap Heads for China

Apparel company will open first store there next year

(Newser) - With its US business stagnating, Gap is hoping to find a few some new customers—1.3 billion of them. The largest American apparel company is opening its first store in China next year, alongside a new push in international online sales, reports the Wall Street Journal. After booming in... More »

Big Business to 'Swarm' DC to Back Climate Bill

Bucking conventional wisdom, eBay, Gap, others push for action

(Newser) - More than 150 business leaders plan to “swarm” Capitol Hill over the next two days in support of climate change legislation. Hailing from such disparate companies as eBay, the Gap, and PG&E, the executives say having a law in place would give them confidence in their long-term planning,... More »

New Gap Jeans Compete With Designer Denim

But for about a quarter of the price

(Newser) - Gap is taking on the reigning kings of designer denim with its new jeans revamp in an effort “to reinvent Gap as a place of authority on denim,” the company's president says. Gone are the old designs—all of them. In their place are six new styles that... More »

Skinny Jeans Craze Puts the Squeeze on Guys

Style trumps comfort as trend hits not-so-hip

(Newser) - The market for skinny jeans is expanding, as more and more men looking to show off their assets are pouring themselves into tight fitting styles, the Wall Street Journal reports. But as they target a crowd beyond the usual hipsters, skaters, and hip-hoppers, manufacturers are giving customers a bit of... More »

How You Can Shop —and Help the World

A list of retail strategies to do good while you buy

(Newser) - Want to do some shopping and do some good—at the same time? Sandy Stonesifer, writing for Slate, offers some ways to buy for the betterment of humanity:
  • Go for products that donate a portion of proceeds to charity—like Product (Red) iPods, which give to the Global Fund, and
... More »

Stocks Mixed on Retail News

Wal-Mart falters, but Sears posts strong forecast

(Newser) - Stocks ended mixed today amid largely negative retail news and nervousness on unemployment, MarketWatch reports. Investors were shaken by poor December earnings and a reduced quarterly forecast posted by Wal-Mart, which managed to perform well through 2008. The Dow fell 27.24 to close at 8,742.46. The Nasdaq,... More »

For Retail Workers, Big Bro Is Tracking

Computer systems help max productivity, cut costs

(Newser) - As a sluggish economy pinches retailers, many are now turning to computer programs to track employee productivity, the Wall Street Journal reports. At Ann Taylor stores, a computer system calculates average sales per hour, units sold, and dollars per transaction —then automatically schedules the best workers during the store’... More »

Former Retail Workers Stuck in Folding Mode

Gap-style training creates a generation of neat freaks

(Newser) - Countless current and former retail workers have an obsessive urge to fold clothes ironed into their brains, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Gap started the trend for tightly folded displays in the '80s and rivals quickly followed suit. A whole generation of retail alumni spent thousands of hours folding... More »

Ditching TV Ads Helps Put Gap Back on Track

Clothing seller sees profit up 40% after cutting marketing costs

(Newser) - The Gap's balance sheet is back in the black, helped along by its decision to stop spending on TV ads, Advertising Age reports. The clothing retailer slashed marketing spending by nearly a fifth in the first quarter and saw profits leap 40%, even as sales slumped. The Gap has switched... More »

March Retail Sales Fall Flat

Easter partly to blame as chains fall short of expectations

(Newser) - Retailers’ same-store sales were flat in March, due in part to an early Easter, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Thomson Financial Same Store Sales Index, projected to sink 0.1%, fell 1.1%, excluding Wal-Mart. Shoppers weren’t ready to buy for spring on the heels of winter, store... More »

Wal-Mart Leads Feb. Retail Rally

Overall sales jump doubles expectations, calms consumer spending fears

(Newser) - Big retailers showed unexpected signs of life in February, beating weak sales predictions to inject some hope into the market. Wal-Mart led the way, posting a 2.6% same-store increase, beating its own predictions of flat-to-2% growth. Overall, same-store sales climbed 1.9%, with more than half of retailers beating... More »

18 Stories