Nordstrom Inks Deal to Acquire Hautelook
As acquisitions go, Nordstrom’s agreement to buy the flash
sale site Hautelook is not a biggie from a dollars and cents ($270 million)
standpoint. That said, it has the potential to be a game changer because it
represents the first time a mainstream chain has purchased a major player in
one of the fastest growing segments in retailing.
"While our focus on providing a superior in-store shopping experience
is our roots, continuing to find ways to use technology to serve customers
the way they want to be served is critical. This partnership gives Nordstrom
and HauteLook shared growth opportunities as online shopping evolves," said
Blake Nordstrom, president, Nordstrom.
Mr. Nordstrom said Hautelook would continue
to operate under CEO Adam Bernhard and the company’s management team. A report
on the Women’s Wear Daily (WWD)
website pegged Hautelook’s annual revenues at $100 million.
membership base of well over four million shoppers is closely aligned with
the Nordstrom customer," said Mr. Bernhard. "We feel fortunate
to partner with a company that shares our commitment to providing customers
with great brands and an exciting shopping experience."
involves partnering with brands for limited time sales. Designers choose the
merchandise and determine pricing. The retailer, which rarely pays for merchandise
up front, handles order fulfillment from warehouses on the coasts.
a retail analyst with Sterne Agee, told The Seattle Times that
the growth of flash sale sites is "mind-boggling."
"It’s in Nordstrom’s
interest to preemptively join that crowd," he
The WWD article questioned whether Hautelook might face future
supply issues as the economy improves and brands are not faced with excess
inventory. Gilt Group, according to the report, has begun placing orders for
manufacturers to make product after facing supply issues.
- Nordstrom to Acquire HauteLook – Nordstrom, Inc./Business Wire
- Nordstrom to buy flash-sale website HauteLook – The Seattle Times
- Nordstrom Buys HauteLook – Women’s Wear Daily (sub. required)
- Nordstrom Bets Big on Digital With $270 Million Acquisition of HauteLook – Mashable
Discussion Question: What will Nordstrom’s acquisition of Hautelook mean for it and its retail competitors?