The American (Eagle) Invasion

Straight on the heels of Gap, H&M, and FCUK, comes news of a new American chain store in our Israeli midst.

Haven’t we had enough? Guess not.

Looks like American Eagle Outfitters is in talks with Israeli retailers like Fox and Gottex to enter the Israeli fashion market as soon as 2012.

According to TradingMarkets.com, the Fox company has been trying to expand its business by bringing global fashion to this country, while the other companies  (including Gottex, Elbit Trade and Retail and more, want to go beyond the other brands they own (two of the retailers own Zara and Mango.)

Is this another case of American companies catering to Israeli locations because Israelis like to dress like Americans? Maybe.

In any case, I have some serious issues with this.  Here’s why:

There’s the whole idea of the Israeli consumer. Does American Eagle really fit it? Some would say yes.  You do have that group of Israelis that don’t dress what I call modern hipster, forgoing their standard Euro glam short skirts, blazers, neon, and sequins for khakis, long t-shirts, and sporty looks that create the typical American Eagle Outfitters niche.  It’s also a mix of hippie and army-inspired wear.

I honestly believe that more people here dress urban chic, or punky.  However, the market for American Eagle Outfitters is there.  NEVERTHELESS, the key question is (and one of the biggest reasons why I don’t feel it’s necessary to include AE): Why do we need another overpriced American brand on the market, when we already have one just like it (Gap) and another Israeli brand that looks quite similar but is much, much cheaper (Fox)?

This is exactly what I told friend David Corman over a short Twitter convo when he informed me that the preppy chain could be coming to Israel. Friend Shirrabel also joined in.

David Corman davidcorman: @fashionsocial just heard that american eagle is coming to Israel. What do you think about that move?

fashionsocial: @davidcorman hmmm, well, i personally don’t feel that the american eagle brand fits the Israeli consumer.

@davidcorman However, I’m not surprised. Suddenly all types of international retail chains are upon us since Gap, H&M…

David Corman davidcorman: @fashionsocial you don’t think people who shop at fox kind of stores will like it?

Shira Abel shiraabel: @fashionsocial I disagree – I think American Eagle will do very well bc of the price point. (cc. @davidcorman )

David Corman davidcorman: @shiraabel if its actually affordable (unlike Gap). When I was there there were no sales and the prices were exorbitant cc @fashionsocial

fashionsocial: @davidcorman well its possible, but if fox is already cheap, why do they need another store w same type of clothes that’s more expensive?

fashionsocial: @shiraabel what do you mean by the price point? american eagle in the states is not so cheap. its not H&M

Shira Abel shiraabel: @fashionsocial American Eagle (from what I remember) abt the same price as Gap & wanted to be A&F – so yeah, there’s a niche @davidcorman

Shira Abel shiraabel: @fashionsocial AE isn’t targeting H&M (which is priced cheap & made like total crap) they want those just under A&F – and it works

David Corman davidcorman: @fashionsocial israelis love american stuff. The gap store in mamilla in jerusalem the opening week was absolute madness! 

Photos: American Eagle Outfitters

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2 thoughts on “The American (Eagle) Invasion

  1. roz

    your points make sense simona, and you know at the end of the day its not about value for the buck its about selling a name, a vision, an illusion, that if you dye your hair blonde and shop at AE you might just look like an american!!

  2. Adam

    As a Canadian recently moved to Israel, I can’t wait for AE to come here – I’ve bought all my jeans exclusively at AE for years – they’re the best fitting, best looking jeans for a guy with a smaller frame such as myself. Even since I’ve been here, I’ve waited until trips back to Canada to pick up new jeans. I suppose it is a matter fashion, but not because I care what I look like at the bar on the weekend (I’m married with children), but in looking good in general.

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