Author: Dan Berthiaume
Source: CSA The Business of Retail
Walmart is stepping into the void created by recent disruptions in the children’s apparel space.
The discount giant is partnering with KidBox, an online subscription-based service that sends out curated boxes of children’s clothing based on kids’ individual fashion preferences and personalities. Under the deal, Walmart.com shoppers will be able to purchase up to six different boxes a year, with the items curated by KidBox. They can order a box and schedule delivery on demand or sign-up for automatic shipments of the boxes, which are timed to seasons, back-to-school and holiday
Each “Walmart KidBox stylebox” will include four to five personalized kids’ apparel items from more than 120 brands, including BCBG, Butter Super Soft, C&C California and Puma. The cost of each box is $48, which is approximately 50% off the suggested retail price for the group of bundled items, Walmart said.
To order a box, customers first complete a short online “style” quiz for their child. KidBox stylists will use the responses to tailor each box to the child’s style preferences, the season and where the child lives.
The boxes will be available for sizes 0 to 14 for girls and 0 to 16 for boys. Items will include sweaters, denim, dresses and graphic t-shirts. For every box purchased, KidBox will clothe a child in need through its partnership with Delivering Good.
“We are thrilled to partner with KidBox to introduce our first kids’ subscription apparel service offering premium fashion brands at a substantial savings,” said Denise Incandela, head of fashion, Walmart U.S. e-commerce. “Over the last year, we have significantly expanded our portfolio of kids’ fashion brands as part of our broader effort to establish Walmart.com as a destination for fashion. Our partnership with KidBox enables us to round out our offering with additional national and premium kids’ brands.”
The new Kidbox offering complements Walmart.com’s expanding kids’ fashion assortment, which features more than 100 new brands that have been added over the last year, including Betsey Johnson, Kapital K, Levi’s, Limited Too and The Children’s Place. Walmart has extended inclusive sizing across its kids’ private brands online and in its stores. The retailer has also launched new shopping destinations for dance essentials and gymnastics, and licensed children’s clothing.
“Walmart has done a lot over the past year to establish itself as a go-to retailer for all things fashion, and we’re honored to partner with the retailer to expand its kids’ assortment online, while also saving parents time and offering them the value and convenience of a stylebox,” said Miki Berardelli, KidBox CEO.
Walmart is stepping up its kids’ apparel offerings as major players in the space are faltering. In January, Gymboree Group began winding down operations at its Gymboree and Crazy 8 stores in the wake of Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Citing an “unprecedented” challenge from Gymboree’s bankruptcy, The Children’s Place announced in March it will close 40-45 stores. And while the Walmart-KidBox partnership is not a rental service, its launch comes shortly after Rent the Runway’s introduction of its Rent the Runway Kids offering for young girls.