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Gap Inc confirms Banana Republic is returning to the UK

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Image: Banana Republic

Gap Inc. confirms that Banana Republic and Athleta will start selling within the UK and Ireland again through its joint venture with Next announced in September 2021, where Next owns 51 percent and Gap owns 49 percent.

The move builds on the success of the Gap partnership, which has seen the apparel brand reintroduced to the British high street with shop-in-shops in Next stores in London, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow.

Banana Republic, founded in 1978 and acquired by Gap Inc in 1983, closed its UK website earlier this year after becoming an online-only retailer in 2016 when it closed its nine stores in the region following a decline in sales.

Banana Republic returns to the UK

In a statement, Banana Republic said it has launched a “curated collection” for women and men on Next.co.uk, featuring timeless classics, organic denim jeans and cargo trousers, as well as tuxedo jackets, wool blazers, sequin dresses and silk shirts.

Meanwhile, US premium sports and activewear brand Athleta, acquired by Gap in 2008, will also enter the UK market in early 2023 with a women’s range on Next.co.uk.

Jon Jeffery, managing director of the joint venture, said in a statement: “I am excited to embark on the latest part of our Joint Venture journey, with the re-introduction of two amazing brands to the market through the Next.co.uk platform.

“Both Banana Republic and Athleta are truly aspirational Gap Inc. brands, who individually offer a unique perspective and a strong design aesthetic that allows us to engage and delight new audiences and further expand our portfolio within the UK and Ireland.”

Banana Republic
Gap Inc