Connect with us

Lifestyle

After A $400M Investment, Vuori Is The Active Wear Brand To Watch

Published

on

The active wear category is not just crowded. It’s cut-throat. And as a business catering to a very defined and discerning market, the challenge lies in offering a unique yet completely functional design point of view. Unlike traditional fashion labels, performance garments are expected to strike the delicate balance between extreme comfort, multi-functionality and design innovation. Failing to tick one of three boxes, is like falling out of the marathon race.

As someone who spent a good part of 2020 and 2021 in leggings, bike shorts, joggers and sports bras, it’s easy to see why only a handful of labels have actually managed to enjoy prolonged brand loyalty. There are label that entice through fashion-forward designs, but don’t deliver when it comes to long-wear comfort and supporting intense workouts. Before the rise of athleisure pieces as legitimate fashion essentials, several established brands in the category were offering limited and uninspired design options—screaming logos and repetitive colorways—which, after a few seasons, had started to resemble a snooze fest. And if you are like me who finds motivation in beautiful active wear garments, the same old designs simply wont do on days when you struggle to get up and get moving.

Inside the athleisure drawer, only two brands dominate, with the very recent addition of new VUORI sets from the brand’s Fall/Winter collection. Inspired by sweeping and captivating views of Joshue Tree, pieces capture the various shades of the dessert from dusk till dawn. Still decidedly minimalist in terms of cut and print, flawless fit and ultra premium sustainable fabrics immediately merited endearment.

Seamless leggings and bottoms comfortably contoured in all the right places without pinching or bunching. Tanks and sports bras had the same effect—hugging the upper body so that it actually appeared as if I had lost a few kilos, and moving with me in perfect synchronized manner as I flowed on the mat and beyond. It was hard to part with the kind of support and comfort Vuori’s pieces provided, especially with versatile designs that can take one from coffee to after-work cocktails.   

“Our mission is to create quality products for your pursuit of a happy life; empowering deeper connections with fitness, nature, creativity, and community,” writes Founder and CEO Joe Kulda. Since launching the brand in 2015, Vuori has gained loyalty from customers in the US. The team adds, “With a strong e-commerce business, thriving brick and mortar stores, and a network of best-in-class wholesale partners, Vuori, unlike many other digitally-native brands, has been profitable since 2017.”

Venture capital fund SoftBank Vision immediately saw the potential in Vuori’s growth as a brand, and recently made one of the largest investments ever recorded for a private apparel company. Investing $400M to support the brand’s next phase of growth, the team at Vuori is now geared up for “international expansion next year, launching an omni-channel business in key markets throughout Western Europe and Asia Pacific and an innovation center in Taiwan. While growing its global distribution, Vuori will double down on retail expansion in the US with more than 100 store openings slated for the next five years.”

Kudla shares, “SoftBank has a long track record of identifying market-leading companies and support entrepreneurs with bold visions.” The company explains that apart from expansion to international territories, the investment will also be utilized in fortifying sustainability efforts made through partnerships with Climate Neutral and CleanHub. SoftBank Investment Advisers Managing Partner Nagray Kashyap affirms: “With its strong consumer engagement, sustainability focus, and sheer growth, we believe Vuori is the leading brand in the attractive activewear market.”

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *