ANN: a name favored by royalty and commoners, as well as a company recognized for its aspirational luxury and feminine wear-to-work style. The national retailer specializes in women's clothing, shoes, and accessories designed and sold exclusively under its Ann Taylor, LOFT, and Lou & Grey monikers. The Ann Taylor brand targets fashion-conscious career women through 245 namesake stores more than 120 of which are "Factory" outlets), while the LOFT brand offers moderate-to-more priced casual apparel through some 537 stores, including outlets. In addition, it owns five Lou & Grey stores. ANN hangs in the closet of women's clothing retailer Ascena, which purchased it in 2015.
Change in Company Type
In mid-2015 Ascena, owner of Lane Bryant, Dressbarn, and Maurices clothing stores, paid $2.2 billion for ANN in hopes of extending its reach into more upscale and older markets.
The retail chain has stores in 47 US states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and Canada, as well as franchised locations in Mexico. It generates the overwhelming majority of its sales in the US.
With more stores, the LOFT brand generates most of ANN's total sales, with Ann Taylor locations accounting for the remainder.
In 2015 the company operated 1,030 retail stores in 47 US states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada, including 245 Ann Taylor stores, 537 LOFT stores, 116 Ann Taylor Factory stores, 127 LOFT Outlet stores, and five Lou & Grey stores.
Sales and Marketing
In addition to its has stores, ANN sells online to more than 100 countries worldwide via www.anntaylor.com and www.LOFT.com.
ANN has been working to integrate the store and online shopping experience by giving the sites access to store inventory, allowing customers to order online for store pickup, and offering online "events" to clear store inventory. It enhanced its search capabilities in 2015 and launched an e-commerce site for its Loou & Grey brand.
In the bricks-and-mortar world, the company has been expanding internationally. It now has about a dozen stores in Canada and in fiscal 2015 established a partnership to franchise LOFT stores in Mexico (it currently has three). ANN has plans to continue its North America expansion, as well as evaluate opportunities in other areas.
ANN launched a new concept, Lou & Grey, in 2014 that features easygoing, casual clothing for everyday wear; those revenues are included in the LOFT segment.