Photo: Flickr/lululemon athletica
After Lululemon began selling out of $98 yoga pants, lots of other retailers rushed in to get a cut of the market. Gap acquired and expanded activewear brand Athleta, while Nordstrom started a Zella line by poaching designers from Lululemon.
But women’s athletic apparel is just heating up, and the market is about to get a lot bigger.
Avi Woolman, CEO of ActivewearUSA, says there’s still plenty of room for expansion in the category. The company is the top e-commerce site for athletic apparel.
Lululemon’s success has been attributed to realising that women wanted to look good when they worked out and designing flattering clothes.
“This is no longer a niche that is only serving the one per cent,” Woolman says. “As enhanced design, performance fabric and fits become the norm for workout gear, women are tossing away their college sweats and upgrading to a trend-forward look for the gym.”
Now, brands including Old Navy, H&M and Forever 21 have expanded their women’s activewear offerings.
There’s still plenty of room in the market, Woolman says. “This is an explosive category that is going to see exponential growth in the coming years.”
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