Ann Taylor is a clothing company that sells and distributes various apparels for women. The company owns a chain of stores that specializes in distribution of styled suits, dresses, blouses and sweaters and a variety of shoes and accessories for women. The company has four major divisions which it uses to market its brand. These divisions are Ann Taylor, LOFT, LOFT Outlet and Ann Taylor Factory. Ann Taylor, a subsidiary of ANN INC., is located at Times Square Tower in New York City (Aspen Editorial Staff, 2012). The company aims at meeting the ever-changing needs, tastes and preferences of modern women by providing highly styled and fashioned clothes and accessories. Products of Ann Taylor are designed for both casual and official duties and special events like weddings.
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History of Ann Taylor Company
Ann Taylor was founded in 1954 by Richard Liebeskind. According to Leuzzi (2010), the first store of Ann Taylor was opened in New Haven, Connecticut. The name of the company was derived from one of the best-selling dresses in a stored owned by Liebeskind’s father. Leuzzi (2010) asserts that Richard Liebeskind decided to use the name “Ann Taylor” in order to create a special identity amongst the customers. Ann Taylor became a public corporation in 1991 (Plunkett & Plunkett Research Ltd., 2008).
Ann Taylor established the first LOFT Outlets in 1996 to provide highly-fashioned clothes at cheap prices for women. The company celebrated its fifteenth Anniversary in 2004, a year after resignation of Kim Roy as the president. In mid 2005, Ann Taylor launched a new collection called Ann Taylor Celebrations that aimed at selling branded dresses, shoes and bags for women. The Ann Taylor Celebrations targeted special occasions and events such as weddings and organizational parties.
In 2007, Ann Taylor launched the Ann Taylor Collections which comprises of luxurious attires, accessories and shoes. Most of the Ann Taylor Collections products are made from Italian fabrics and yarns (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2007; Arpan & Dee, 2010). In October 2008, Ann Taylor launched a special collection called Ann Taylor Beauty which comprises of cosmetics, fragrances and other beauty products. Ann Taylor Beauty products include body lotions, home care products such as soaps and perfumes.
By January 2009, Ann Taylor had a total of 935 stores which comprised of 319 Ann Taylor stores, 500 LOFT stores, 100 Ann Taylor Factory stores and sixteen LOFT Outlet stores (Rosen, 2009). Additional twenty-four new stores were opened in various states in the U.S. in 2010 to supplement the existing stores. At the end of 2011, Ann Taylor had a total of 986 stores spread across forty six states in the United States of America.
Ann Taylor is currently headed by Katherine Krill who is the president, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Director of the company. Ronald Hovsepian is the chairman of the company whereas Michael Nicholson is the Chief Finance Officer (CFO), Treasurer and Executive Vice-President of the company. Mr. Brian Lynch if the brand president for Ann Taylor Division while Mr. Gary Muto is the brand president for LOFT Division.
Ann Taylor has been reporting success and profits for many years. In the 2009 financial year, Ann Taylor reported a net income of 334 million U.S. dollars. The assets of the company were valued at 960 million dollars whereas total equity was valued at 417 million dollars. Moreover, it was amongst the top-ten retail clothing companies in the United States with annual revenues above two billion in 2010 (Alexander, Britton & Jorissen, 2011). Most products of Ann Taylor are mainly manufactured in Asian countries like China, Hong Kong, Philippines and South Korea. The company also has two e-commerce websites Anntaylor.com and LOFT.com for selling products online.