“The athleisure leisure category has been hot. They see an opportunity to introduce product into that category,” he said.
Nagel also believes that Dick’s, which has thrived during the pandemic, launched its own line to become less reliant on athletic brands. For example, Nike is shifting to sell more of its goods directly to consumers instead of through outside retailers.
“Dick’s is dependent upon companies like Nike and Under Armour,” he said. “If someone like Nike started to not deliver products to Dick’s, Dick’s can say ‘we have our other brand.'”
Dick’s, however, says the VRST line won’t compete with any of the current brands it sells.
“It’s a very different product assortment from what we have with our core vendor partners right now,” CEO Lauren Hobart told analysts on a call last week.
“Lululemon is an extraordinarily strong brand with a very, very loyal customer base.”