If you pay any attention at all to celebrity news, chances are that you have heard that actress Kate Hudson has branched out in her career. While she previously focused exclusively on acting, the mother of two also recently co-founded Fabletics, an innovative line of active wear for women. In the handful of years since she became involved with the company, Hudson has been all over the media raising awareness about the brand and its many benefits. In fact, it might almost seem like she has switched over to running a business full time. Is she hanging up her acting hat in exchange for one of fashion business mogul?
When Kate Hudson first hit the scene as an actress, many felt that she only broke into Hollywood because she has a famous mother. Although she is indeed the daughter of famous actress Goldie Hawn, Hudson hasn’t merely ridden her mom’s coattails to stardom. Rather, Hudson is a true talent, and she has starred in many box office smashes as well as plenty of critically acclaimed films. She’s also the mother of two children, and she is known for being a highly active person. During her pregnancies, she faced many cruel comments from the press regarding her figure, so she understands the pressure that women feel to look a certain way.
With her sunny disposition and genuine understanding of women’s active wear needs and concerns, Kate Hudson was a natural choice when Adam Goldenberg and Don Ressler, owners of TechStyle Fashion Group, came up with the concept of Fabletics. The men knew that they needed someone who was approachable and likable, as they planned from the start to focus on social media strategies and word-of-mouth buzz. Both men have stated in interviews that Kate Hudson was the first person who came to mind.
Happily for Kessler and Goldenberg, Kate Hudson was more than receptive to the idea of going in with them on launching a new active wear line for women. From the get-go, the actress was wildly enthusiastic about the brand. Right away, she could see that Kessler and Goldenberg “got it.” They knew that there were many huge voids in the women’s athletic wear field. In particular, most outfits for women are bland, boring and uninspired. The ones that are actually stylish tend to cost a small fortune. Most troubling of all is the fact that most athletic brands for women only offer standard sizes, so the majority of women are excluded.
Fabletics works on a membership model, which costs nothing unless product is purchased. People can elect for VIP membership for a monthly fee. Based on their preferences, they are given a list of personalized options each month. They can purchase the items or pay the monthly fee, which then turns into store credit that never expires.
Why did Fabletics adopt the membership model in the first place? The main reason was to provide more affordable options for active women. With consistent revenue streaming in via membership fees, the company can more easily afford to offer top-quality materials and craftsmanship without charging an arm and a leg. Another perk of the membership model is that it allows the company to track customers and their preferences more effectively. This allows Fabletics to make incredibly effective use of big data, which many companies are still struggling to do.
According to Forbes, the company has increased its revenues by at least 36 percent every year. In 2016, its sales increased by 43 percent, and the company was most recently valued at $250 million. Already, more than 1.2 million people have signed up for monthly memberships, and more than 21 million people follow Fabletics on Twitter, where they can interact with and engage with the brand and even with Kate Hudson herself.
Fabletics isn’t stopping with e-commerce. From the start, the company planned to expand into brick-and-mortar retail, and it is already well on its way to dominating that space too. Initially, Fabletics tested the waters with pop-up stores at popular shopping districts in major metro areas. Based on the smashing success of those efforts, the company started opening physical locations. Most recently, there were 22 brick-and-mortar Fabletics store. The first were located in Columbia, MD; Cincinnati, OH; St. Louis, MO; Newark, DE; and Woodland Hills, CA. Since then, locations have opened in Las Vegas, at the Mall of America and in several other areas. At least a dozen more will open in 2017, and the company expects to have 75 to 100 stores within the next few years.
Despite what people often assume, Kate Hudson plays an active, hands-on role in the operation of Fabletics. Her partners have said that she is always up to speed regarding the company’s revenues and sales, and she continually keeps track of which items are moving and which aren’t. This is all facilitated through the company’s incredible use of big data, which allows them to not only personalize services for members but to achieve exceptional inventory control.
So, is Kate Hudson hanging up her acting hat and becoming a business mogul for good? Think again. As much as she loves working for and promoting Fabletics, acting is and will always remain her first passion. However, the ambitious woman sees no reason why she can’t keep up with both things–and she has two kids to raise as well. Where does she find the time? For Hudson, it’s less about time and more about passion. Many factors have contributed to Fabletics’ success, but the genuine enthusiasm of Hudson and her partners is undoubtedly among the most crucial. When combined with a spirit of helping and giving back, these factors promise great things for the future of Fabletics.