JCPenney is repositioning and launching several exclusive brands

JCPenney is repositioning and launching several exclusive brands

US department store retailer JCPenney has re-launched its Xersion activewear line as part of a wider overhaul of its private label brands.

The move also taps into trends seen during the coronavirus pandemic where consumers working from home are seeking more comfortable clothing.

The redesign of Xersion is the first major change since the range was introduced in 2008, and features the new and exclusive Everair fabrication, combining breathable technology and Quick-Dri wicking for optimal air flow to remain cool and dry. 

Designed by JCPenney's in-house product development and design team, the activewear incorporates sweat-proof pockets, reflective and anti-odour elements, venting, thumbholes, compression, built-in mesh, and chafe-free seams. Women's sports bras and high-waist leggings stay in place with three compression levels – studio, move, and train – to match the workout.

"We are kicking off 2021 in the best way possible – offering new and improved merchandise to our customers," says Michelle Wlazlo, executive vice president and chief merchant. 

"We know it can be challenging for customers to find activewear that delivers on performance, technology, design, comfort, and style, and the new Xersion product is sure to impress with updated details to help our customers meet their wellness goals."

The re-launch of the Xersion brand is the first of several planned new instalments in 2021, which follows the repositioning and launch of several exclusive JCPenney brands in 2020, including the introduction of the Stylus "styleisure" line and Linden Street home brand.

The overhaul comes after JCPenney emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy early last month after completing the sale of its retail and operating assets to Brookfield Asset Management and Simon Property Group.

Athleisure was a major contributor to US apparel sales last year, and has most recently seen rival department store retailer Kohl's reveal plans to launch a new private label speciality athleisure brand, produced using sustainable methods and materials.

Over in the UK, retailer Marks & Spencer is expanding its Goodmove activewear range to include offerings for both children and men. During the six months from March to September last year, its online activewear sales were up by more than 200%.