American retail major Nordstrom announced on 12 July that it has acquired a minority stake in Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT brands of British online retailer ASOS. The partnership is aimed at the growth of the brands globally, especially among young consumers, and redefine the traditional model of retail and wholesale.

All four brands were acquired by ASOS around six months ago.

As part of the deal, Nordstrom, which has been the exclusive distributor of Topshop and Topman in the US since 2012, will now have exclusive multi-channel retail rights for both brands in all of North America, including Canada, besides owning a minority stake globally. It will also be the sole brick-and-mortar store for these brands worldwide.

“With its long-established connection to Topshop, extensive US consumer insight and unparalleled reach right across North America, Nordstrom is the right partner to help ASOS accelerate the growth of our Topshop and ASOS brands in this key market,” said Nick Beighton, Chief Executive Officer at ASOS.

“ASOS is all about giving customers the confidence to be who they want to be. Partnering with Nordstrom will support our US strategy, allowing us to offer that to even more 20-somethings in North America. We’re excited about the opportunities ahead, collaborating to deliver the best product through engaging, friction-free multi-touch experiences, and we can’t wait to see the growth in our brands in Nordstrom stores,” Beighton added.

Image credit: Daniel Sorabji/AFP

According to a statement by Nordstrom, ASOS will retain operational and creative control of the Topshop brands, although a shared ownership model will help drive the growth of the brands worldwide.

The investment is also a step to a much broader partnership between the two retailers. Talks are on for a multichannel showcase for a handful of ASOS brands for Nordstrom customers. Additionally, starting this fall, customers will be able to pick their orders at Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack stores.

Commenting on the development, Nordstrom’s President and Chief Brand Officer, Pete Nordstrom, said, “We could not have found a better partner in ASOS, the world leader in fashion for the 20-something customer, and are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with them to re-imagine the wholesale/retail partnership. Bringing the ASOS brands, including Topshop and Topman, to our customers allows us to create newness and excitement for this important dynamic customer segment.”

Nordstrom began as a shoe store in 1901 and now has over 350 physical stores. It has sites attracting almost two billion annual visits. ASOS, on the other hand, is present in more than 200 markets. Its customers can shop around 85,000 products from 850 brands, including global, third-party, and in-house labels such as ASOS Design, ASOS Edition, ASOS 4505 and Collusion, Miss Selfridge, and HIIT.

Main and Featured image: Olivier Douliery / AFP

This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Singapore.

Harleen Kalsi
Harleen feeds off her nomadic spirit and incessant shenanigans on the road to stay alive. When not writing, she is busy searching for a good read/art/act.