One of the greatest ironies of the fitness industry is the fact that when people decide to get into shape, they often struggle to find active wear that not only fits but that is attractive as well. Sadly, most athletic wear brands only cater to women who wear standard sizes, which leaves those who are looking to shape up with limited options. Having experienced significant body changes through her life, actress Kate Hudson understood the problem all too well. Rather than sit back and do nothing, however, she helped to establish Fabletics, an innovative line of athleisure wear for women. In its short history, the company has surged to amazing heights of success–and Hudson deserves much of the credit.
When the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of an active wear line for women presented itself, Kate Hudson seized it. Driven not only by the desire to provide clothes that are suitable for all body types but to develop workout clothes that transition seamlessly into casual wear for everyday use, Hudson immediately threw herself into the work at the fledgling startup. With TechStyle Fashion Group, the massive e-commerce firm, behind it, Fabletics was designed from the start to make the most of the capabilities of big data and internet marketing.
Fabletics was founded in 2013, and Kate Hudson was on board from day one. Right away, the company decided to adopt a Warby Parker model, which alludes to the eyeglasses retailer’s amazing success in marketing its wares online. Warby Parker has shown the world the amazing potential of big data, and forward thinking people like Hudson knew that the same model and philosophy would translate well to the world of active wear. With the smiling, friendly face of Kate Hudson behind it, Fabletics had a promising future right out of the gates.
That isn’t to say that no work was required of Hudson and her team–quite the opposite, actually. For their idea to work, they knew that they needed to offer something a little different. In addition to lacking a broad array of sizes for different body types, products from within the active wear sector tend to be priced out of many people’s budgets. All too often, women must choose between comfortable clothes that look good and fit well and ill-fitting, uncomfortable clothes that they can actually afford.
With the issue of affordability in mind, Kate Hudson and her Fabletics team decided to try something a little different. In exchange for a very reasonable monthly membership fee, members would receive discounts of up to 50 percent on the entire line. In addition to that, new customers receive an entire Fabletics outfit for less than $50, which is pretty much unheard of with clothes like these. By collecting these membership fees, Fabletics can then develop functional, stylish athletic wear for women that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Members find that they more than recoup the cost of the monthly fee since the items are so affordable.
Another barrier that women face when it comes to staying active and fit is finding the time to work out. Even if they can make it to the gym or the yoga studio, they have to change into and out of their workout clothes, and that takes even more time. Hudson and her team saw yet another opportunity here. They could develop athletic wear for women that effectively doubles as casual leisure wear. Fabletics clothes look just at home in the yoga studio or gym as they do on the street, so they are perfect for today’s busy, working women who struggle to squeeze exercise into their days.
Since the company was founded in 2013, it has blown away everyone’s expectations. The line’s sales rose by a whopping 43 percent in 2016, with a revenue run rate of $250 million. More than 21 million people follow Fabletics on Twitter, and the company already boasts more than 1.2 million monthly members in eight countries around the world. Although its origins are in e-commerce, the company also has 18 retail stores around the U.S.
So, it is clear that Kate Hudson did many things right when getting Fabletics off the ground. Some of the things that she credits for her success include:
- Inspiration – Hudson knows that the best way to keep moving forward is by giving back. She learned this from her mom, Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn, whose Hawn Foundation does a lot of good for kids around the country. Her mom’s example proved to Hudson that with the right intentions, great things can happen.
- Opportunity – As highlighted above, Hudson identified many ways to help Fabletics stand out from the crowd. The athletic wear sector is fiercely competitive, and names like Under Armour and Nike tend to get most of the attention. By expanding into plus sizes, offering a membership model and effectively using big data, Fabletics has quickly made a name for itself.
- Big Data – Fabletics makes effective use of the vast amounts of data that is available via e-commerce and internet platforms. The company uses this data to deliver exceptionally personalized experiences to customers and to continually adjust its offerings.
- Hands-On Approach – Fabletics benefits from far more than just Kate Hudson’s name. The actress has thrown herself into the work, and she has been actively involved from the beginning.
- Confidence – Finally, Kate Hudson has a simple piece of advice for anyone who wants to realize their dreams: Believe in yourself. Plenty of people scoffed when she attached herself to Fabletics, but Hudson persevered.
Fabletics is already transforming the world of women’s active wear, and the change that it’s inspiring is for the better. With Kate Hudson at the helm, the company is sure to someday be looked back upon as a true pioneer in comfortable, stylish, high-quality athleisure wear for women of all sizes.