Starting this week, Parade will be sold on Target.com and 400 of its nearly 2,000 locations across the US. The partnership is Parade’s second foray into wholesale; last summer, it struck a deal with Urban Outfitters to be sold online and in 25 stores.
“Our ambition is to be the leading underwear brand for all people,” Téllez told BoF. “We’ve established that cult-like following online, and our next phase is ubiquity.”
Parade is one of many e-commerce-first brands that have pivoted into wholesale in the past year as the pandemic spike in online shopping has subsided. Glossier, for instance, is now sold in Sephora stores and Allbirds offers its wool running sneakers in Nordstrom.
Like those brands, Parade views profitability as a priority these days. Téllez said it has been able to cut its cash burn in half over the past six months “while continuing to grow at a rapid speed.” The company expects to be profitable by the end of the year, or within four years in business.
“The future of DTC is capital light and [partnerships] with retail experts,” Téllez added.
Late last year, Parade tapped former Victoria’s Secret executive Kristen Dolzynski as chief design officer, a signal that the young brand is looking to contend with giants of the industry, including Victoria’s Secret, Hanes and American Eagle Outfitters’ Aerie.
For now, however, Parade remains a fraction of the size of their businesses; in 2021, Aerie generated $1.4 billion in sales.
Still, Parade has managed to capture the hearts — and wallets — of a new generation of young consumers in such a way that most incumbents can only dream of. Through colorful marketing featuring models with a range of body shapes and gender expressions, Parade embodies the self-accepting ethos of Gen Z.