(Bloomberg)—Coach Inc., the iconic New York-based leather goods maker, is changing its corporate name to Tapestry Inc. at the end of the month, a bid to broaden its image after acquiring the Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman brands.
“We are now at a defining moment in our corporate reinvention,” CEO Victor Luis said Wednesday in a statement. “In Tapestry, we found a name that speaks to creativity, craftsmanship, authenticity and inclusivity on a shared platform and values.”
The fashion house is building a multibrand company at a time when the handbag industry is facing waning demand and retailers are struggling with declining traffic at bricks-and-mortar stores. Coach, No. 168 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500, bought Kate Spade (No. 124) earlier this year and shoemaker Stuart Weitzman in 2015 to grow into a broader lifestyle company.
The Coach brand isn’t going anywhere, even as the company changes its corporate identity. But executives are striving to show that they aren’t dependent on the Coach business to fuel growth.
Still, the name change didn’t go over well with investors. Coach shares fell as much as 2.8% to $38.90 in New York, the biggest intraday drop in more than three weeks. The stock had gained 14% this year through Tuesday’s close.
Founded in 1941, Coach has relied on its New York heritage and prestige to fend off European imports. Yet, sales began to dwindle in recent years amid competition from Kate Spade and Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. It has been selling less to department stores as the embattled retailers offer deep discounts to lure in shoppers. It has also stepped up its digital marketing and tapped actress and singer Selena Gomez as brand ambassador to drive buzz and sales.Favorite