AMERICAN APPAREL reopens?!-theodyssey.com
I THOUGHT THEY WERE GONE FOREVER.
So…American Apparel is back? The last time I heard anything about American Apparel was April 20th, 2017, and it was for their close out sale for a whopping 90 percent off in select stores. I wish I was able to score some pieces at those prices, but I didn’t have time to. There were a lot of mixed feelings in the air regarding AA closing stores and going bankrupt. Some people felt it was a good idea American Apparel was out of business, while some felt they would truly miss it. I was one of the people who would miss it. I started noticing AA when I was in high school, it was big during the Tumblr era. I liked the clothes a lot and loved the company, even more, thanks to their ethical production methods based in factories in Los Angeles, California.
The brand was a little pricey and I only shopped for their cheaper items like accessories or items on sale; especially during Black Friday because the discounts were pretty decent. To be honest, when AA was in business, I was too broke for it but when I became able to buy it, they closed down. Imagine that.
According to Fortune.com AA filed for bankruptcy in 2015 and again in 2016 due to being about $177 million in debt. I was completely unaware that this was going on with the company, but I do admit that the stores were never full of customers. Every time I entered their store I would be the only customer or there would be a maximum of three other customers shopping. So yeah, they weren’t making a lot of money. Relying primarily on online shoppers would not meet any of their sales goals.
The company could have also been losing money because of their founder, Dov Charney, who was fired due to his inappropriate behavior in 2014. According to the Huffingtonpost.com, Charney would engage sexually with AA employees and models physically or by sexting. Photos of those encounters were even found on company computers. There were lawsuits filed against him for sexual assault and harassment. However, this was not the only issue with the company either. Many felt uncomfortable with the brand because of how they advertise the clothing…very risqué. A lot of the models have taken photos topless or have posed in ways that gave the company an oversexualized reputation. This had to have an effect on profits as well and it didn’t help the charges its founder was facing either.
As of January 2017, LATimes.com reported that AA was closing all 110 of their US stores.
But wait there's more: Turns out Gildan, a company known for their quality and affordable basics, bought AA in a bankruptcy auction for $88 million. As I read the article, I realized I owned a few pieces from Gildan apparel. I’ve purchased crewneck sweaters for about $8 and they are completely worth it.
“Most of Gildan’s business is in affordable basics such as T-shirts that can be screen-printed. In American Apparel, the company saw an opportunity to add a “premium fashion” brand that will complement its print wear business,” said Garry Bell, spokesman for Gildan. I completely agree with this, it makes sense for profits.
Yesterday I received an email from AA about purchasing their iconic basics. I believe they still have all physical locations closed but you can still order online as they restock. The site isn’t fully stocked yet, as they only have a few items listed for each category but yes, they are back.
Yes, you can finally go buy that body suit you’ve been eyeing because I sure am! I’m glad the company is back and under new management. This company has potential and I would like to see how they make their comeback.
The question is....what will be the first piece you buy from American Apparel since the relaunch?