Foot Locker Announces $12.5M Investment in Rockets of Awesome
Foot Locker announced Tuesday that it's investing $12.5 million in New York City-based children's apparel brand Rockets of Awesome, according to CNBC. The athletic footwear retailer will open Rockets of Awesome clothing shops within Kids Foot Locker locations, making it the largest retailer of the children's brand's products in the U.S. In addition, Foot Locker will sell Rockets of Awesome merchandise on kidsfootlocker.com. According to a Foot Locker press release, the investment in Rockets of Awesome enables the company to enhance its commitment to the kid's apparel segment, while further diversifying its customer base and expanding its product offerings. Foot Locker has recently made investments in other digital brands, including GOAT Group, Carbon38, Super Heroic, and PENSOLE.
Total Retail's Take: Foot Locker's multiple investments in digitally native brands is a strategic effort to bring diverse new segments of online shoppers to the brick-and-mortar retailer. Traditional retail brands like Foot Locker need to attract younger audiences to stay relevant and profitable as more and more millennial and Gen Z consumers look to online, direct-to-consumer brands for their shopping needs. Rockets of Awesome is one of the fastest-growing online kid's brands, using technology and data science to offer parents personalized service and on-trend, affordable kid's clothing. This merging of traditional and startup brands is where the retail industry is headed, allowing brick-and-mortar stores to entice online brand loyalty into physical locations.