Saks expands Super Bowl initiative to women and children – WWD
Saks Fifth Avenue is preparing to celebrate the Super Bowl in an even bigger way this year.
Starting in 2019, the retailer worked with designers to create special collections related to the big game. It started out small, with 26 brands participating in Atlanta two years ago, and in 2020, when the game was in Miami, it has been extended to 25 designers and more than 100 products.
The response to both of these initiatives has prompted the company to expand it even further for this year’s game, which is set to be played on Sunday, February 13 at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif. Saks has worked with 28 of its top brands to create 275 limited-edition ready-to-wear, footwear and accessories products that will for the first time include products specific to women and children. It is launching today.
The initiative is labeled Game Day Capsules and among the participating brands are Alyx, Balmain, Christian Louboutin, Dolce & Gabbana, Givenchy, Just Don, Purple Brand, Rhude, Theory and Versace.
Other changes this year include a partnership with Denver Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy, who features in the digital campaign, as well as activations at several stores outside of the host city.
Louis DiGiacomo, senior men’s vice president for Saks, said the 2022 initiative is “major,” with its 360-degree approach that encompasses both extensive merchandise and marketing.
“New this year is for women and children, so now we can dress the whole family for match day,” he said. In addition, the products offer more of a “sporty vibe” as well as a Los Angeles-inspired sensibility due to the location of the game.
The partnership with Jeudy also marks the first time Saks has used an athlete for his Super Bowl initiative. DiGiacomo said that when Saks was looking for a player to team up with for the campaign – which is going to be purchasable – he believed Jeudy would easily connect with his customers.
“We wanted to launch someone who was promising,” he said. “Jerry has a strong personality and a fashion sensibility that is reflected in the digital campaign. He is an energetic and passionate young man.
DiGiacomo said the most popular category in the past was shoes, worn by sneakers, as well as rtw designers and accessories from Givenchy, Amiri, Off-White and Moncler.
“We expect this to continue this year and we believe denim will become more important,” he said of the category, which has grown in importance to the company in recent times.
He also predicts that some of the new brand additions will generate interest, including Casablanca, Ksubi, Polo Ralph Lauren and Reese Cooper.
Again, Saks doesn’t work directly with the National Football League, which tabled the term Super Bowl in 1969 and charges a fee for using the words. So, rather than paying for the rights, DiGiacomo said the store believes that by remaining independent it has more flexibility in how it can work with fashion brands to execute the product.
Game Day pods will be promoted at Saks Beverly Hills, which will host designer appearances with Purple Brand and Just Don, denim customization with Ksubi, and arcade soccer game activation with Bossi Sportswear. Additionally, Saks will host activations in other locations across the country at stores with strong menswear businesses, including Atlanta, Chicago and Houston, where “fashion-steeped sports” have always been strong.
“This is the first time that we have carried out activations outside the host city,” said DiGiacomo. “We are seeing Game Day weekend being a success across the country.”
He added, “Men continue to be an important part of Saks’ business and continue to grow year after year.” He also revealed that starting this week, a major renovation of the New York flagship’s menswear department will begin. The project will begin on the seventh floor and is expected to be completed in the fall. In 2019, the company reinvented its footwear department on the sixth floor of the flagship, creating an 8,000 square foot home with 60% more retail space. The two renovations are part of a $ 250 million store upgrade that began about six years ago.
DiGiacomo declined to provide details on what will be changed during the renovation at this point, saying only, “It’s going to be dramatic and I think it will position us as the number one destination for menswear in North America. . “