News broke this morning that Gap will be shutting down 175 of its 675 stores—roughly one quarter of its North American footprint. 140 of them will get the axe before January, leaving the brand with 500 stores, plus its outlet locations, which are not being closed. The slew of news on the company in the past few months has not been favorable. Basically, the entire brand is in the shitter, barring Old Navy, which is apparently killing it.
The company says that the store cuts will help speed up the introduction of new products, which the brand is sorely in need of considering its competition, like H&M and Zara, who move products from design to racks in a matter of weeks. The closings will cause the brand to lose a whole lot of sales, considering all of the costs that go into actually closing stores. Along with J.Crew, the all-American brand seems to be losing its footing and taking the steps to rebuild. Meanwhile, The Washington Post posits that perhaps the Gap model has become totally obsolete. The "uniform" mentality that Gap has thrived on has lost its favor amongst individualist millennials. Our desire to build our own personal brand identity has really fucked with Gap's signature mentality of "Dress Normal," which has actually been the brand's slogan for a minute now. We're no longer dressing "normal," which I tend to think of as a good thing. Gap, unfortunately, is just the collateral damage