Anthropologie Home and Terrain
About two years ago, Anthropologie announced plans to expand its home business to roughly 40 percent of its assortment. Home was a very solid investment then, but although Anthropologie has tested the concept in places like New York, it is not clear how far the retailer, a division of publicly traded Urban Outfitters, has gotten. Meanwhile, the home business has slowed down for many retailers and has become more challenging for those like Anthropologie, for whom it is not their primary business.
After several years of outsized growth, home had a slightly negative second quarter, Tricia Smith, global CEO of Anthropologie Group, told investors last month. Its customers have pivoted from pandemic-driven furniture purchases to hosting and entertaining-related categories, she noted. “Customers are improving their homes with decorative layers focused on tabletop, glassware, decorative objects and textiles,” she said. “As they refresh their spaces and prepare to entertain more, we are seeing robust growth in our regularly-priced business and gift and entertaining categories.”
In May, Anthropologie announced three leadership appointments to support future growth across multiple categories, including Aaron Mutscheller as president of Anthropologie Home and Terrain, its outdoor and garden retail division. Mutscheller is responsible for Anthropologie’s home and garden business across all channels of distribution and oversees design, buying, production and global sourcing for the brand.
Mutscheller is well-versed in upscale home furnishings retail. Prior to Anthropologie, he was CEO of home furnishings and accessories store Nickey Kehoe. He also spent almost a decade at Serena & Lily, the last five of them as chief brand officer, and was vice president of brand and product development at Williams-Sonoma Inc. from 2002 – 2006. Anthropologie has an older and wealthier customer base that has more disposable income, according to Morningstar analyst David Swartz, and may be less vulnerable to a downturn in the economy. It will be Mutscheller’s job to keep that audience engaged.
Smith told investor she is confident in Anthropologie’s ability to drive growth and brand awareness in home. “I am confident in our growth opportunities and our team’s abilities to execute,” she said.