As the coronavirus crisis batters the fashion industry, Moda Operandi has made the decision to shutter its men’s business.
The luxury e-tailer has been in the menswear space for just under two years, having begun selling men’s apparel, footwear and accessories in June 2018 both through its trunk show model and in season. Moda Operandi plans to keep its men’s team on through the second quarter “to help wind down the business,” a representative told FN.
“As a result of the economic impact to the fashion industry caused by COVID-19, Moda Operandi has made the difficult decision to sunset our men’s division, and focus on our core business around women’s fashion, fine jewelry, and home products. We are extremely proud of and grateful to our men’s team,” a Moda Operandi spokesperson said. “We’re also grateful for the continued support of our community as we navigate this crisis and focus efforts on best serving our client base and designer partners.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, sales of high-end goods could decline between 20% and 30% this year, according to analyst reports released last week. RBC Europe highlighted the pinch the industry will feel in Europe because of fewer travelers — around half of luxury sales in the continent come from tourists, compared with 80% to 90% domestic sales in the Americas — which is likely to continue even when lockdowns ease up. Further, RCB predicts that aspirational luxury spending could take a hit as younger consumers — particularly millennials and Gen Zers, which together account for about a third of luxury shoppers — are more exposed to the economic fallout from the virus.
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Moda Operandi is not the only luxury retailer to makes changes amidst the coronavirus outbreak. Fellow multi-brand retailers including Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom have taken cost-cutting measures including reducing executive pay and furloughing store workers. In addition to furloughing staff, Neiman Marcus is reportedly considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. And Net-a-Porter, a luxury e-commerce website, temporarily suspended its U.S. shoppings site. It is now taking online orders again but its distribution centers remain closed for the time being.