A month after its spin-off from its parent company was scrapped, the Gap-owned Old Navy brand has revealed that it will be exiting the Chinese market in the next few weeks, citing plans to refocus its attention on its operations in North America. The retailer’s store on Chinese e-commerce platform Tmall has already stopped selling products and an announcement on the brand’s official Chinese website explains that it will be closing all of its stores in the country on March 1, 2020.
Old Navy first arrived in China in 2014 and currently operates 10 stores in the country, six of which are in Beijing. Plans for its withdrawal from the market were first revealed in November of last year.
The retailer is the latest in a series of international brands to beat a retreat from the Middle Kingdom in the last few years, including Forever 21, Asos and New Look.
In February 2019, Gap announced that it was planning a spin-off of the Old Navy brand as a separate company, so that the consistent strong performer could concentrate its efforts into growth-oriented strategies and expansion.
However, the future of the planned split was put into question when momentum at Old Navy began to slow and, in January of this year, Gap revealed that it would no longer go ahead with the separation, explaining that the cost and complexity of the operation had thrown the company’s ability to create value from the split into doubt.
Gap is planning to announce its fourth-quarter and