The Weekly Closeout: Nike exits Russia and tech firms unite around the metaverse

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It’s been another week with far more retail news than there is time in the day. Below, we break down some things you may have missed during the week, and what we’re still thinking about.

From the surprise ending to Office Depot’s sale-or-split considerations, to a set of Lord of the Rings-themed candles, here’s our closeout for the week.

What you may have missed

With inclusivity in mind, Thinx rebrands social media, website

In an effort to make the language it uses around periods more gender inclusive, Thinx rebranded its social media handle from @shethinx to @thinx. The brand said the language change will also apply to its website URL soon.

Retrieved from Thinx via Instagram on June 23, 2022


“This change is anything but small, and we knew it was necessary and long-overdue,” the company said in its announcement. “As a brand that makes period underwear and creates space for conversations around the realities of menstruation, the importance of gender-inclusive language truly cannot be understated.”

Thinx said the move is in part to help combat the period market that is dominated by feminine-gendered products, which can be isolating for some people, including members of the trans community. Thinx is hoping the language change helps provide a space for all of its customers to feel represented.

“Of course, this is only the beginning: from education to media to access to period products, we still have a long way to go to make sure that all menstruators are represented and supported. But using gender-inclusive language to talk about periods is a first step toward lasting change,” the company said.

Beyond Yoga steps into brick and mortar

Marking its first independent store, Beyond Yoga on Saturday will open a pop-up shop at The Grove in Los Angeles.

“As a Los Angeles-based brand, opening our first pop-up experience at The Grove is a natural first step into retail,” Michelle Wahler, co-founder and CEO of Beyond Yoga, said in a statement. “The space reflects Beyond Yoga’s values and provides us with the opportunity to meet loyal customers while our knowledgeable style experts also introduce new fans to our buttery soft favorites.”

The store, more than six months in the making, will carry products in sizes XXS to 4X. The space will also host community events, including with Bia Blooms to create custom bouquets, Bala for a workout class and Sweet Rose creamery for an ice cream event.

The opening of the pop-up comes nearly a year after Levi Strauss announced it would acquire the DTC yoga brand.

Beyond Yoga’s Wahler said it intends to open more stores this year and in 2023.

Nike exiting Russia, American Eagle exiting China

Nike and American Eagle Outfitters are each apparently making big decisions about their overseas operations, with the sports giant exiting Russia for good and the teen apparel retailer reportedly at least hitting pause on its sales in China.

After temporarily closing its stores in Russia, Nike won’t reopen them, according to a notice posted to its Russian website that states the company “made a decision to exit the Russian market.” The website and mobile app also will no longer be available in the region, per the statement.

A company spokesperson confirmed that, “NIKE, Inc. has made the decision to leave the Russian marketplace,” but did not respond to several requests to clarify whether the decision is related to the ongoing war in Ukraine. “Our priority is to ensure we are fully supporting our employees while we responsibly scale down our operations over the coming months,” the spokesperson said.

Several brands and retailers have closed up shop in Russia since that country’s invasion of Ukraine four months ago.

For American Eagle, the calculation to leave behind its China-based sales, if true, is likely financial rather than political. The retailer didn’t immediately respond to requests for confirmation of a report in Women’s Wear Daily stating that the apparel retailer has not only closed stores there but also deleted its Tmall storefront online.

Chinese customers can still shop at American Eagle via its own brands’ websites, although the goods will be shipped from the U.S., according to Women’s Wear Daily’s report. And the decision doesn’t affect its Hong Kong market, which remains “an important part of our [Asian Pacific region] growth strategy,” according to that report.

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