Ivanka Trump shuts down namesake brand

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The Ivanka Trump Collection store stands inside Trump Tower in New York, U.S., on Thursday, June 1, 2017
The Ivanka Trump Collection store stands inside Trump Tower in New York, U.S., on Thursday, June 1, 2017 Credit: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

The Ivanka Trump brand will soon be no more. The seven-year-old label, which opened a store last year in Trump Tower, will shut down so Trump can focus on her work as an advisor in Washington D.C. to her father.

"After 17 months in Washington, I do not know when or if I will ever return to the business, but I do know that my focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington, so making this decision now is the only fair outcome for my team and partners," Trump said in an emailed statement.

The news comes as several department stores have dropped the Ivanka Trump label, citing poor sales; many consumers have also supported boycotts of the label because of Trump's political relationships. Earlier this month, Hudson's Bay, the Canadian owner of Lord & Taylor, said it is "phasing out this brand through the fall based on its performance." The decision follows similar actions by Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus last year.

In December, the Ivanka Trump brand opened a store in Trump Tower in Manhattan in order to sell directly to consumers; a phone call to that store on Tuesday afternoon went unanswered. The brand's website, which began to operate as an e-commerce store earlier this year, appeared to be fully functional on Tuesday.

In an emailed statement, Abigal Klem, president of the label, cited strong sales since the brand's inception, and also noted "the successful launch of our rapidly growing e-commerce business."

Analysts noted the political pressure the brand faced; even though Trump recently tried to distance herself from the brand by leaving the day-to-day operations to other executives, consumers still recognized the association.

According to Brand Keys, a brand research consultancy that analyzed consumer purchase behavior from last October to mid-July, surveyed shoppers have increasingly become less likely to purchase anything from the brand.

"Views on the brand have become highly polarized and it has become a lightning rod for protests and boycotts," said Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, in an email. "While the company is still viable, doing business has become far more challenging and these problems will only increase." He notes, however, that the Ivanka Trump brand copyrights and intellectual property will be retained—paving the way for a possible relaunch in the future.

--With Bloomberg News

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