Last fall, JC Penney’s newly appointed CEO, Ron Johnson, held a press conference to describe his vision for the brand. His plans included a logo change (that American flag-like rectangle you’re probably now familiar with) and the introduction of in-store shops. Some will have merchandise from the chain’s current selection of labels, such as Levi’s and Liz Claiborne. Others will feature special designer lines—exclusive ranges from Nanette Lepore and Betsey Johnson are already in the works. What he didn’t mention, however, was that one of those mini boutiques would be a collaboration with Joe Fresh.
The two have inked a four-year agreement to sell the Canadian import’s affordable clothing at 683 JC Penney stores nationwide. Nothing has officially launched yet, but the project is well underway. As you can see from this photograph of the shop-in-shop’s mock-up, it appears to be a tinier version of Joe Fresh’s larger outposts. Kind of similar to what Topshop will look like when it launches in Nordstrom, or the way Sephora already lives in JC Penney, it’ll ring true to the Joe Fresh aesthetic.
"I think it’s really important that the brands that populate the store feel like true brands and feel genuine," Johnson recently told WWD.
Joe Fresh also plans to open more free-standing stores throughout the US beyond the six that already exist. Add all that expansion to its spot in Canadian supermarkets (where the affordable line actually got its start) and it seems that Joe Fresh is poised to take over the world. Or, at least, North America.
The company’s bright future is undoubtedly the reason why it was approached by J.C. Penney in the first place; we’re curious to see how this team-up goes. Do you think, after several years of spotty sales and lackluster product, the mega-chain is finally poised for a comeback?
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