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According to Ivanka Trump’s brand, sales are strong – even as retailers such as Nordstrom ditch the first daughter’s fashion line, blaming poor sales.
In an interview with Refinery 29, the brand’s president Abigail Klem said that since the beginning of February, the brand has had some of the “best performing weeks in the history of the brand.”
Early February was a notable time for the brand. On February 2, Nordstrom announced plans to cut ties with the fashion line, citing poor sales – an excuse that was backed up by data reported by the Wall Street Journal,which found that sales of Ivanka Trump merchandise fell 26% in January.
Retailers including Neiman Marcus and Belk also stopped selling Ivanka Trump’s line in early February following months of anti-Trump boycotts.
Yet Klem, who took over as president of the brand when Ivanka stepped down from day-to-day operations after her father’s election, claims that the brand was thriving during this very period.
“For several different retailers Ivanka Trump was a top performer online, and in some of the categories it was the [brand’s] best performance ever,” she told Refinery 29.
British fashion search engine Lyst provided data to back up her claim, which show that the brand shot up from No. 550 to No. 11 from January to February on the company’s list of brands selling the most individual items.
So, what gives? Are retailers ditching Ivanka Trump because the brand won’t sell, or is the fashion line doing better than ever in the Trump Era?
The most likely answer is that both sides are telling the truth, to some degree. Just because the Ivanka Trump line has exploded in popularity on some retail or ecommerce sites, that doesn’t mean that the same is true across the board.
Different retailers attract different customers.
For example, analytics firm Jumpshot found that traffic to Ivanka Trump brand pages on the Macy’s website increased roughly 18% in December and January. Traffic to Ivanka Trump brand pages on Nordstrom’s website, on the other hand, decreased 14% during the same period.
The news about retailers ditching Ivanka Trump’s brand also gave the fashion line a lot of publicity in February. President Trump tweeted about Nordstrom’s decision to drop the brand and White House counselor Kellyanne Conway encouraged Americans to go buy Ivanka’s products on national television. Both events garnered a ton of press coverage.
All of this, combined with Trump supporters’ promise to buy even more Ivanka after retailers dropped the line, likely led to a sales boost at least in the short term for some retailers.