Gap Inc. has announced plans to roll out its performance lifestyle brand Athleta into Canada this year. The company will launch its eCommerce site later this summer, followed by the opening of its retail stores at Yorkdale Shopping Center in North York, Ontario and Park Royal Shopping Centre located in West Vancouver, British Columbia in fall 2021.
“International expansion is a key component of our growth strategy to reach two billion dollars in net sales by 2023, and we are very proud to introduce Athleta to customers in Canada,” said Mary Beth Laughton, President and CEO, Athleta.
“As a purpose-driven brand, we are excited to expand our community of empowered and confident women and girls to Canada and bring them a differentiated and inclusive offering in the performance lifestyle category.”
The company plans to open roughly 20 to 30 stores a year, adding to its existing profitable fleet of over 200 stores across the United States, which have continued to play a key role in customer acquisition and brand awareness.
Looking ahead, Athleta will be introducing new revenue streams through wholesale partnerships and international franchise and company-operated stores to help the brand achieve its goal of $2 billion in net sales by 2023. In 2020, the company surpassed $1 billion in net sales and saw a 16 percent annual sales growth.
Athleta’s effort to expand into the Canadian market follows extensive research into the behaviors of Canadian consumers. The brand found that Athleta’s differentiated brand focus on wellness, sustainability and inclusivity coupled with versatile products was something that truly resonated across geographies, including the Canadian market.