Athleisure Wear-GymShark-Females Spend Big

The Economist August 22, 2020 pp47 Gymshark “Primus Insta pares “The success of a clothing brand reveals what going to the gym is really about”

In 2012 Ben Francis founded Gymshark (GS), an athletic clothing brand, in his parent’s garage and just now sold a 21% state for $1.3B to General Atlantic-an American Fund Manager. “His business milks the merging of physical and online spaces.” GS uses more than 100 Social Media (SM) influencers to pitch the brand. Using SM provides buyers with incentive-muscular men “in tight-fitting gear attract envy as well as romantic attention.” Two Swedish MBA Students, Linus Juhlin and Miretta Soini, reported on their study of Instagram postings by 30 influencers. This sample revealed that males are twice as likely than females to “pose while working out”. In contrast, females more commonly created posts that were “lifestyle related” like “wearing a sports bra to a basketball game.” As it turns out, although GS initially was focused on muscular men, today women account for 2/3 of sales apparently following the trend of “’athleisure’, wearing gym gear not just for working out.” Women spend more than men on GS. Using SM, GS like other entities are able to micro-target potential consumers.