Business news : Vans Targets $1 Billion Growth in Revenues and Reveals New LXVITM Product Line

Vans at an investors meeting provided details on its strategy to add $1 billion in revenues over the next five years. Growth in the Americas, representing about 70 percent of total revenues in 2011, will account for nearly half of the anticipated growth, with a key focus will be expansion outside Vans’ core West Coast market. The action sports brand also unveiled  new line of LXVI footwear, a shoe geared more toward the athletic customer.

At an investor meeting held at the House of Vans in Brooklyn, N.Y. – a 24,000 square-foot skatepark and event space – Vans announced that it expects revenues to reach $2.2 billion by the end of 2016, representing an annual growth rate of 13 percent. Vans is a wholly-owned subsidiary of VF Corporation (VFC).

"Having more than tripled its revenues since being acquired in 2004, Vans is an amazing example of the power of VF's business model that enables brands to grow profitably and globally while protecting their unique cultures," said Eric Wiseman, VF Corporation chairman and chief executive Officer. "Our investments to grow Vans across a variety of platforms – product innovation, geographic expansion and direct-to-consumer – have provided us with a very strong foundation to support its next chapter of growth."

Vans President Kevin Bailey underscored the importance of the brand’s rich heritage and authenticity in achieving its growth plans. "Since 1966, we have been focused on building products that enable creative self-expression. From our first skate shoe to today's announcement of the LXVI line, Vans defines “Off the Wall” youth culture. Generating increasingly more powerful connections with our consumers while leveraging the substantial resources of VF will drive our growth in both established and emerging markets, adding $1 billion in new revenues by 2016.”

Geographic Growth

Vans expects substantial growth in each major geographic region during the next five years. Growth in the Americas, representing about 70 percent of total revenues in 2011, will account for nearly half of the anticipated $1 billion in revenue growth. With balanced growth across both wholesale and direct-to-consumer channels, a key focus will be expansion outside Vans’ core West Coast market. Major metropolitan areas such as New York City and Mexico City, where Vans has demonstrated great success, will be utilized as epicenters to drive brand awareness.

In EMEA (Europe/Middle East/Africa), Vans expects to add $350 million in revenues by 2016. This follows a year of exceptional growth in 2011 when Vans achieved 55 percent constant dollar revenue growth in the region. Building on successful strategic execution in the United Kingdom, Vans outlined how investments in social media, traditional advertising and grassroots events will serve as a catalyst to drive continued growth across Europe.

Asia Pacific (APAC) is expected to be Vans’ fastest growth region with its largest opportunity concentrated in China. Accounting for 8 percent of the brand’s revenues in 2011, APAC revenues are expected to nearly triple by the end of 2016, adding $170 million in growth.

Channel Growth

Vans’ growth over the next five years is expected to be balanced across both wholesale and direct-to-consumer channels. Expected wholesale revenue growth of $565 million over the period will be driven by healthy growth in both footwear and apparel in conjunction with rapid wholesale door expansion in the APAC region.

Vans’ direct-to-consumer business, encompassing owned retail stores and e-commerce, should add $435 million in revenues by 2016. E-commerce is expected be Vans’ highest percentage growth channel, increasing nearly 40 percent annually and adding $100 million to revenues over the next five years. To showcase the brand’s wide array of footwear and apparel products, culture and imagery, Vans will continue to expand its retail stores, with plans to add more than 200 stores to its existing base of 310 stores.

Product Innovation – Vans Introduces LXVITM Line

Vans also revealed its new line of LXVI footwear, which features several new construction advances that result in a lightweight, flexible architecture that maximizes comfort and fit for the action sports enthusiast. Specific new innovations include:

    LuxLiner – a free-floating liner that improves comfort through increased airflow and fit.
    Waffleflex – a new tread design offering increased flexibility and decreased weight.
    UltraCush Lite – a custom blend of foams providing superlight cushioning.
    ActionFit – a proprietary lifted heel fit that gives a more lively feel to your step.
    PleasureCuff – advanced heel and collar cushioning offering uncompromised comfort.
    RapidWeld – new stitch-less construction that reduces weight while increasing durability and flexibility.

Vans LXVI footwear debuts with five innovative designs including, the lightest Vans shoe ever, Graph; the mid-top Secant; the all-terrain Inscribe; the modern Variable; and the unique Ortho. The product, with prices starting at $70, is expected to launch globally the last week of June at select Foot Locker (FL) locations, select specialty lifestyle retailers, select Vans retail stores and at www.vans.com. 

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