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Updated: 4 Dec 2014

Nike Launches Lifestyle Stores for Women

Extra
Nike Women's-Only store, Shanghai

Responding to the considerable upward tick in women's spend on activewear (up 9% from 2012-13 in the US alone – see Sports Retail Reinvented for more), Nike has opened two hybridised retail destinations just for women in the US and China.

Following the success of its first Nike Training Club (NTC) in Chicago in 2013, which combined retail with fitness classes, its new destinations in Newport Beach, California and Shanghai (6,000 sq ft and 4,500 sq ft respectively) boast an equally holistic perspective.

The venues incorporate full workout studios with locker rooms; free-of-charge fitness clinics, yoga classes and personal training sessions; and also serve as test spaces for customers to try out products. Pitching themselves as the heart and soul of Nike's community commitment to fitness, they also serve as meeting points for the Nike+ Running Club. Additionally, consumers can take advantage of styling and fitting facilities, such as alteration services for athletic leggings and trousers.

Proving its technological credentials, the freestanding locations also feature "endless aisle" technology that is swiftly becoming standard practice in Nike stores – a large touchscreen that allows customers to purchase products that are not offered in-store, with free home shipping.

The stores, which stock the full range of running, training and sportswear styles as well as designer collaborations, were conceived to serve as important touchpoints for the brand's increasingly valuable female demographic. Nike expects sales among this group to grow by more than 40% over the next two years, from $5bn to $7bn, outpacing anticipated growth among its male consumers.

Cathy Sparks, Nike North America's vice-president and general manager of stores, commented: "The incredible energy around women's sport and fitness is a cultural shift, and we recognise that fitness for our consumers is not just what they do, it's who they are."

Read more on the rise of sports retail, including the athleisure phenomenon and vying for the female dollar, in Female-Focused Retail, The Rise of Edutainment, and Female-Focused Sports Concept: Foot Locker Approved.

For more on the evolution of stores via hybridised concepts as attuned to lifestyle as product, look out for our upcoming report Hybrid Lifestyle Destinations, publishing in January 2015.

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