Retail report: LOFT will become second Ann Taylor store in Ann Arbor's Briarwood Mall
Briarwood Mall has been home to Ann Taylor for some time, but now Ann Taylor LOFT will join the mall's store lineup. Mall Director of Marketing Denise Murray said LOFT will occupy 4,857 square feet of space in the JCPenney corridor of the mall.
Though store names will not be affected, last week the company also announced a name change: It's now Ann Inc.
According to the CBS Interactive Business Network:
“Ann’s CEO Kay Krill says it’s more about the company’s multi-channel strategy that includes downsizing existing Ann Taylors and opening smaller, boutique-style new ones, pushing to grow LOFT and Outlets as well as enhance e-commerce and inventory management systems.”
LOFT differentiates from the Ann Taylor brand by offering a more casual and layered style. According to Wikipedia:
LOFT, originally Ann Taylor LOFT, was established in 1996 as an extension of the original Ann Taylor brand, offers more relaxed fashions for work and home, in the "upper moderate" priced category, offering style and value to customers. The selection provided at Loft initially was a more casual replica to that of the regular Ann Taylor, however has developed into its own brand, and now carries a unique style to cater to a new and younger crowd.
The Briarwood location is now hiring store managers and sales associates. Targeted opening date has been set as June 28.
There are 11 LOFT stores operating in Michigan, including locations at Green Oak Village Place near Brighton and Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi.