– is an American clothing and accessories retailer.
Founder(s): Donald G. Fisher and Doris F. Fisher
Brands: Old Navy, Banana Republic, Paperlime and Athleta
On August 21, 1969, Donald and Doris Fisher opened the first store on Ocean Avenue in San Francisco. The store’s merchandise consisted of Levi’sand LPs. In 1974, the company began to sell private-label merchandise.
- ‘The Gap’ was a reference to ‘The Generation Gap’.
- Old Navy was named after a bar in Paris.
- Forth & Towne, the company’s fourth traditional retail concept, was launched on August 24, 2005, featuring apparel targeted toward women 35 and older. On February 26, 2007 after an 18-month trial period, Forth & Towne was discontinued, and the 19 stores were closed.
- The original trademark for the brandname was as a service mark for retail clothing store services
- The brand took part in the Product Red campaign. In early 2006, they released a special RED collection, including a T-shirt manufactured in Lesotho from African cotton. The expanded Product Red collection was released October 13, 2006. 50%-100% of the profits went to the Global Fund.
- On October 6, 2010, they introduced a new logo in an attempt to create a more contemporary presence in the retail market. The new logo was made with Helvetica typeface and did away with the blue box that had become iconic with the brand. There was a public outcry against the new logo, especially in the graphic design community. The company returned to its previous “blue box” logo on October 12, only a week after the new logo’s debut.
- Banana Republic, formerly a small retailer selling safari-themed clothing, was purchased by the company in 1983, and eventually was rebranded as an upscale clothing retailer in the late 1980s. Old Navy was launched in 1994, as a value chain with a specialty flair. Forth & Towne, the company’s fourth traditional retail concept, was launched on August 24, 2005, featuring apparel targeted toward women 35 and older.On February 26, 2007 after an 18-month trial period, Forth & Towne was discontinued, and the 19 stores were closed. A fifth brand, the online footwear retailer Piperlime, was created in 2006. A sixth brand, Athleta, a women’s athletic wear line was added in 2009.
- The Banana Republic stores try to convey a more sophisticated image for an upscale customer seeking “modern, accessible luxury,” whereas Gap stores appeal to a broader demographic of customers. The Old Navy chain is designed to appeal to families and younger customers by emphasizing “fun, fashion, and value” through a store experience that aims to deliver “energy and excitement.”
A complete History of the brand in a wonderful video below- have a look!