Urban Outfitters has “gone too fashion forward” and is losing its mass appeal, according to Goldman Sachs.
The brand “is on par with fashion pace setters, maybe too much so for its core customer, in our view,” analysts wrote in a recent note. “The assortment leaves us concerned UO has gone too fashion forward, backing into a position of having content that caters to the niche vs. the masses.”
“Fashion forward” doesn’t exactly describe what we found when we scanned Urban’s inventory to find out what has analysts scratching their heads.
Here’s a coat, for example, that’s made to look like a bear pelt. It’s made of polyester and latex and costs $US200.
Urban Outfitters’ stock has fallen more than 6% this year while sales have been declining and the retailer struggles to get rid of excess inventory.
Urban Outfitters CEO Ted Marlow said on a call with analysts last month that the brand’s disappointing sales boil down to its fashion offerings.
“I attribute the shortfall in the North American market to missed fashion calls, off pitch marketing, and poor creative execution,” he said.
Here’s another questionable style we found:
The overall-skirt combo had poor customer reviews. Two buyers said they were returning it for being cheaply made.
“It was coming apart as I took it out of the bag,” one reviewer wrote.
The brand’s dip-dyed button-downs apparently didn’t sell very well, either. Two versions are on sale for more than 60% off their original price.
Also on the sale rack is this floral jumpsuit, which was originally $US198:
One customer called this sweater the “most awkward purchase” and said she looked like a “sheepdog” when wearing it:
Marlow said during last month’s call with analysts that Urban really miscalculated demand for certain styles of women’s pants.
“We placed a bet [on certain fashions] and we didn’t cover the volume that we wanted to cover on that,” he said.
Here’s a pair on sale:
Marlow also said the brand may have been “too aggressive” with certain men’s styles in apparel.
Perhaps he was referring to this:
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.