I keep thinking that AEO is undervalued and will turn soon, but everday the market tells me I'm wrong. ANF is holding up well, and now JCPenny is going directly after AEO with their "American Living" brand. I want to pull the plug.
JCPenney to Launch Exclusive New Brand - ``American Living'' - Created by Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation's Global Brand Concepts "American Living" to be Introduced in Spring 2008; Full Lifestyle Offering for JCPenney's Traditional and Classic Customer
PLANO, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 1, 2007--J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE: JCP) today announced its plans to launch American Living, a new lifestyle brand created exclusively for the JCPenney customer by Polo Ralph Lauren's (NYSE: RL) Global Brand Concepts. The launch will be the largest in JCPenney's history and will include a full range of merchandise for women, men and children, as well as intimate apparel, accessories and home. American Living will be available in JCPenney's stores, catalog and industry-leading website jcp.com, beginning in spring 2008.
"American Living will be an exciting new lifestyle brand for JCPenney, offering America's families inspiring style and great quality at smart prices," said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, chairman and chief executive officer. "We are enthusiastic about working with Global Brand Concepts to bring American Living to our customers. For 40 years, Polo Ralph Lauren has been the leader in developing compelling lifestyle brands and we believe American Living will be an outstanding reflection of that talent and vision."
American Living is the first brand being created by Global Brand Concepts, a new group formed within the Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation earlier this year. Global Brand Concepts will be responsible for the design, production, marketing and advertising of American Living.
Ullman added, "Our customer research clearly tells us that substantial opportunity exists within the traditional and classic lifestyle category. Bringing brands like American Living into our merchandise assortment is a key part of JCPenney's strategy to accelerate our growth, and we are looking forward to introducing it to our customers."
I don't think American living has anything to do with trend-right teen clothing even if the logo looks similar. The chance of them impacting American Eagle is about zero. For every new teen retail idea popping up there are two going broke.
The next few quarters probably won't be good for AEO but they will benefit from the downturn in the recovery when many of their break-even competitors will be downsizing or liquidating.