Wednesday, December 31, 2014

FIERCE Perspective! | Abercrombie & Fitch: 2014, The Year...

         AN UNPRECEDENTED FORCE of change, the developments of 2014 coalesced to form a historic gamechanging year which ultimately heralded the conclusion of a monumental era and transition into new times. We take a concise look back at the key moments of a year now for the history books...

J  A  N  U  A  R  Y
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. does away with its Shareholder Rights Plan, a gamechanger for the Company doing away with its - as termed in the industry - "poison pill" and "could [now] make it easier for the company to pursue a sales process [...or also] make it easier for any potential buyer to come in quickly and take the company private..." This among more developments in corporate governance. (read more)

F  E  B  R  U  A  R  Y     2
Founder of the modern A&F and previous joint Chairman and CEO, Michael "Mike" S. Jeffries, begins under his all-new renewable one-year contract which heightens a more democratic corporate governance (having separated the roles of Chairman and CEO) and has CEO unprecedentedly susceptible to performance. Newcomer Arthur C. Martinez is non-executive Chairman. (read more)

F  E  B  R  U  A  R  Y
Insight, Inc., is hired to help further calibrate merchandising and pricing with intelligent strategies

Diversification of merchandise offerings rolls out - including all-new variety item offerings and sizes expansion - intensifies throughout year, preeminence of third-party collaborations

For the first time, black begins gaining a preeminence in merchandise

S  P  R  I  N  G
A&F Paris flagship reopens by spring after having suffered significant internal fire damage on November 24, 2013; the greatest fire damage to occur in an A&F location and the second fire-incidence to happen to a flagship after A&F Fifth Avenue's in 2011. (read more)

A  P  R  I  L
Last Gilly Hicks storefronts shutter

A  P  R  I  L     1  9
After having entered the Greater Chinese market in 2012 with the historic A&F Hong Kong, Abercrombie & Fitch inaugurates on mainland China with A&F Shanghai flagship; looks forward to great potential in ever-flourishing market. (read more)

M  A  Y
Having begun the removal of louvers from A&F storefronts by last weeks of 2013, stores also adjust brightness, and scale back fragrance spraying and music volume. (read more)

J  U  N  E
Introduction of Guy Aroch as photographer for Abercrombie & Fitch brand; initially for lookbooks and featured social media style photos beginning in the summer season.

J  U  L  Y
Fall 2014 may end up becoming last Bruce Weber-lensed marketing campaign. Markedly minimalist in aesthetic, yet classic, refined Weber as ever more.

J  U  L  Y
Abercrombie & Fitch redefined as "the next generation of All-American style" as part of new descriptor. (read more)

A  U  G  U  S  T     2  9
Statement is made during second quarter full earnings report on dramatically scaling down logoing in merchandising come spring 2015. As a sign that there is still continuous struggle with headwinds, financial results report brings about a steep continuous drop throughout the coming weeks for ANF stock; it does away with the rising progress the stock achieved since the beginning of the year, and up to this point, after there having been a broad expectation in general of seeing more promising initial signs with ongoing new initiatives (Q2 proved otherwise). (read more)

A  U  G  U  S  T     3  0
First international mall-based A&F in the world opens in Chengdu, China. (read more)

O  C  T  O  B  E  R
First-ever "brand president" for the Abercrombie & Fitch brand - and first-ever non-American to helm A&F - begins work, British-national Christos Angelides

O  C  T  O  B  E  R     1  7 upgrade launches. (read more)

O  C  T  O  B  E  R     2  4
First non-Weber-lensed marketing campaign since the acclaimed, iconic photographer's 1995-begun exclusive work for Abercrombie & Fitch; Christmas 2014, Aroch photography fully. (read more). Season also witnesses retirement of renowned, iconic Weber photography-plastered shopping bags.

N  O  V  E  M  B  E  R     7
ANF stock makes immediate sharper drop and hits a dramatic two-year low after the third quarter results update release and revised performance outlook. (read more)

N  O  V  E  M  B  E  R     2  1
Company announces anticipated entrance into Mexico with first-ever fully-fledged franchising partnership with reputable Grupo Axo, major move forward in expansion in the sub Latin American market after A&F opening in San Juan Puerto, Rico, in 2010. (read more)

D  E  C  E  M  B  E  R     9
Mike Jeffries, 70, retires from the Company he revolutionized, made globally iconic at the turn of the millennium: marks end of founding, monumental 1992-2014 era; leaves behind towering, historic legacy. While headhunt is on for new CEO "who’s acutely aware of the disruption that’s coming in the industry — the emerging dominance of online and omnichannel retailing — someone who can strategically navigate those waters", Company is now managed by the Office of the Chairman - lead by now-Executive Chairman Arthur C. Martinez, and including COO Jonathan Ramsden and brand presidents Angelides (A&F / kids) and Fran Horowitz (HCo). (read more)

D  E  C  E  M  B  E  R     1  6
Finalizes deal with Inter Parfums to take handle of perfumery business - development and distribution - and bring fragrances beyond A&F and Hollister-branded stores - to upscale department stores, specialty stores, and duty-free shops worldwide. (read more)

D  E  C  E  M  B  E  R     2  3
Abercrombie & Fitch brand inaugurates in the Middle East. (read more)

Conclusion of the first have of the 2010s, the latter years of the decade begin with 2015 in new post-Jeffries era...

Raise your FIERCE bottles to 2015...Stay FIERCE!