Four years after the death of the designer whose name the company bears, Liz Claiborne is changing its name to Fifth & Pacific.
In 2011, the company suffered some setbacks, with a fourth-quarter loss of 9%. In November of last year, Liz Claiborne sold off the “namesake” brand as well as the brand Monet to mall retailer JC Penney, opting to retain and focus on luxury brands it owns. Kate Spade, Lucky Jeans and Juicy Couture are part of Liz Claiborne, and the company is retaining those brands. Mexx, Kenzie and Dana Buchman are among some of the other brands sold by the company in 2011 as it turns its focus to becoming more profitable.
As part of that focus, Liz Claiborne may be implementing the Fifth & Pacific name in order to distance itself from its department store feel and adopt the cachet of its more boutique-like brands. The strategy is to target customers that are more “well-heeled,” according to the Wall Street Journal, due to the fact they spend more “freely” than their middle and low-income brethren during economic hardship.
In a statement, CEO of the soon-to-be Fifth & Pacific said:
“While it’s difficult to replace an iconic name like Liz Claiborne, we believe that Fifth & Pacific Companies telegraphs who we are today — taking inspiration from New York and California, while describing our reach and our potential.”
Liz Claiborne expects the change to Fifth & Pacific to take place around the middle of May, and the company will begin trading under the ticker symbol “FNP.”