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Hollister Co., HCO, or simply Hollister, is an American lifestyle brand from parent brand and company Abercrombie & Fitch Co. inspired by the Southern California surfing lifestyle. HCO is aimed for customers between the ages of 14 and 24.  Goods are available in-store and through the company's online store.  A study by US Bancorp Piper Jaffray reveals that the brand ranked as the second most preferred teens clothing brand in 2008.


Opening and effect

Opened its first store in July 2000 at the Easton Town Center in Columbus, Ohio.  The concept was formulated around a fictional background story created by Mike Jeffries to provide more of an atmosphere for the HCO shopper.

The fictional story states Hollister was founded by J.M. Hollister in 1922 as a pacific merchant shop in SoCal. All of Abercrombie & Fitch Co.'s spin-off brands have an accompanying fictional background (including RUEHL No.925 and Gilly Hicks). HCO's rapid success led Abercrombie & Fitch Co. to notice that the HCO brand was eating into the revenue of the Abercrombie & Fitch brand, referred to as a cannibalism effect. In order to properly distinguish A&F from HCO, higher-grade materials and construction were introduced strictly in the production of A&F clothing and goods, thus raising the prices of the latter.

From international expansion to today

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. marked its expansion into Canada mid-January 2006: two Abercrombie & Fitch stores and two Hollister Co. stores opened, one of each pair at the Toronto Eaton Centre and the other at Sherway Gardens, both shopping malls located in Toronto, Ontario. The stores' openings were originally scheduled for the end of 2005, however construction and planning issues delayed this to early 2006. As of now, locations include: Sherway Gardens, Toronto Eaton Centre, the West Edmonton Mall in Edmonton, Alberta and Upper Canada Mall, in Newmarket, Ontario. The 5th Hollister Co. store opened at Fairview Mall in Toronto, Ontario. Hollister has also opened a store at Pacific Centre in Vancouver, BC as of January 29, 2009.

Starting summer 2007, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. spent an approximate amount of $10 million USD to install video walls into Hollister Co. stores nationwide.  The walls play live-feed from Surf City Huntington Beach, California to provide customers with a flavor of the SoCal surf atmosphere HCO promotes.

By October 2, 2007, 100 select Hollister California stores began to promote Abercrombie & Fitch Co.'s fifth brand Gilly Hicks: Sydney prior to the latter's debut in January 2008. Advertising was achieved through a variety of body care items including body sprays, deodorant, soaps, lotions, and lip balms called Sessions.

On October 25, 2008, Hollister Co. opened its first store outside of USA and Canada in Brent Cross, London, UK. In December 2008 Hollister Co. opened its second store in the UK in Westfield London and a garfunkle freedom Bluewater, Kent, UK.

HCO today

Branding and marketing

Hollister California pursues the technique of "walking self-marketing", where in wearing an item of clothing from HCO results in direct advertising. This is notably achieved through the large embroidery or screenprint of the brand's name, initials, fictional date of establishment and the flying seagull logo on the vast majority of their merchandise. The HCO-labeled shopping bag carried out of the store produces a similar effect. As a result, the company has not relied on media marketing to communicate its desired look and appeal. The brand's marketing images are sepia toned and modified in order to look somewhat faded; this is reminiscent of the grayscale marketing images used by the Abercrombie & Fitch brand. The sepia toned images provide HCO's campaigns with a vintage feel that is adequate to their fictional date of establishment, and the lifestyle promoted by the brand.

 Clothing and goods

To maintain the SoCal theme, stores and merchandise are categorized within the divisions named "Dudes" (men) and "Bettys" (women). Merchandise of which offers Hollister includes but is not limited to "applique" and "heritage" T-shirts, Polos, Henleys, Knits, Shirts, Fleece, Outerwear, regular or destroyed low-rise Jeans, Flip Flops, Fragrances, Boxers and so on. Hollister is the only brand from Abercrombie & Fitch to offer body care products such as deodorants, antiperspirants, and body washes for both sexes. Some of the beauty products offered for the girls are body washes, mists, lotions, and an assortment of lip glosses, lip shines and lip balms. All of these are part of the sessions line.

Goods are given names from SoCal beaches, something which Gilly Hicks does similarly with Australian beaches. The labels proclaim Hollister Co. as "pacific merchants" established in 1922.

A&F Corporate keeps HCO price points affordable to its targeted high-school consumers. Outerwear at its highest is at US$160.00, and jeans at their highest at $70. However, in recent years, Hollister has been raising their prices to rival that of their sister store, Abercrombie and Fitch. Many of their items are almost equal in value to that of Abercrombie, with items having a difference of 20 dollars.


Nearly every year, Hollister releases a new fragrance for both men and women. In 2001, Hollister Co. was released. It was a unisex fragrance. In 2004, Drift was released for men, and August was released for women. Hollister Co, Drift, and August are currently discontinued. In 2005, Jake was released for men, and Malaia was released for women. In 2006, HCO22 was released for dudes, and Ryder was released for bettys. In 2007, SoCal cologne was released for dudes, and SoCal perfume was released for bettys. SoCal cologne is the current Hollister roomspray. In 2008, California cologne was released for dudes, and California perfume was released for bettys. The prices for the fragrances are:

  • Jake & Malaia: 1 oz $30/ 1.7 oz $38
  • HC022: 1.7 oz $29.50
  • Ryder: 1.7 0z $19.50/ 2.5 oz $29.50
  • SoCal: 1.7 oz $38/ 2.5 oz $50
  • California: 1.7 oz $38/ 2.5 oz $50

Hollister also has a line of body care products. For Dudes, Body Sprays ($12), Anti-Perspirant Deodorant ($9),and Body Wash ($10) are available. Scents include Newport Beach, Manhattan Beach, Huntington Beach, Balboa, and Mission Beach. For Bettys, Body Mists ($14), Body Wash ($10), and Body Lotion ($12), are available. Scents include Hermosa Beach, Malibu Beach, Ventura, Laguna Beach, and Crystal Cove. Two scents from the line, Redondo (Dudes), and La Jolla (Bettys), are being discontinued and clearanced for $4.90.The lip shines are also being clearance for $4.90.


Hollister California recreates the SoCal surf atmosphere through the interior and exterior design of their stores. The stores resemble beach shacks, complete with shuttered windows, light and dark brown walls and teal boardwalks on the exterior. The stores' interior is dimly lit with spotlights above the merchandise, and divided into on one side the 'Dudes' section for boys and on the other, the 'Bettys' section for girls. HCO stores are currently scented with the signature "SO CAL" fragrance. They spray room spray scented like their popular "SO CAL" cologne directly on the clothes and mannequins. The store is scented every 60 minutes and is mandated by corporate policy. The merchandise itself is displayed on built-in shelves and dark wooden tables, cots, and benches. In the center of the store is a lounge area with chairs on which blankets are folded, and a dozen surf or general popular culture magazines are piled beside them along with potted palm trees. Several surfboards with Hollister branding are placed throughout the entire store as props. At the "cash wrap," or register area, CDs and magazines are made available for purchase.

Originally, the store design included a resident live Maine Coon cat, named Fletcher, and a Greenwing Macaw named Riley. Animal rights activists protested the inappropriate use of live animals in the store decor, given the dim lighting and loud music (see below). The stores relinquished the animals in November 2000.

As of 2009 all new stores and select stores will grow through a brand upgrade. Including a new store front hall with a chandelier and table, and wallpaper throughout the store.


Hollister California stores are known to play alternative rock and pop music. The company policy is to play the music at the 80-85 decibel level.   One investigation measured the level of sound at 90 decibels. OSHA requires employers to provide ear protection to employees exposed to decibel levels 90 or over.  A store manager in a particular Hollister store stated that there were complaints from customers, but that the volume was mandated by corporate policy.

Future plans

Store expansion

Domestically, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. opened a total of 67 domestic Hollister California stores by the end of 2008.  Upcoming store locations include: Anaheim GardenWalk, Bangor Mall, Bridgewater Commons, Brunswick Square Mall, Shops at Wiregrass, Cary Towne Center, Fashion Valley Mall, La Plaza Mall, Mall of New Hampshire, Newport Centre Mall, Pearland Town Center, Firewheel Towne Center, Seminole Towne Center, Bonita Lakes Mall, Shoppingtown Mall, The Oaks,  and Weberstown Mall.

Internationally, expansion in Canada has continued with the opening of a fourth store on July 3, 2008 at Upper Canada Mall in Newmarket, Ontario.  A fifth Hollister store is now open at Fairview Mall in Toronto during the month of November.  The first store in British Columbia opened at Pacific Centre mall in downtown Vancouver in 2009. Another location is planed for Masonville Place in London Ontario.

UK Expansion

As of May 25, 2009, there are 4 stores in the United Kingdom. Listed below are the locations for new stores with planned opening dates (when available).

Location Opening Date
Brent Cross, London October 25, 2008
Westfield, London December 11, 2008
Bluewater, London January 29, 2009
West Quay, Southampton May 14, 2009
Meadowhall, Sheffield July 30, 2009
Trafford Centre, Manchester Summer 2009
Midsummer Place, Milton Keynes Novemeber 2009
Cabot Circus, Bristo TBA
Liverpool One TBA
Victoria Square, Belfast TBA

It is understood that the retailer is in talks to take another four to five stores but locations under discussion have not been revealed.

Flagship store

New York

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. is anticipating the opening of the first ever Hollister Co.flagship store in New York City, New York due to open doors July 16, 2009. The multi-leveled flagship will be located in the fashionable SoHo district on 600 Broadway at the southeast corner of Houston and Broadway. Thomas D. Lennox (Vice President of Corporate Communications, A&F Co.) stated that the company believes the flagship will be a "memorable" and "unique" experience to customers, as well as an important step for the brand.

The opening is being highly advertised through an extensive marketing campaign launched May 2009. The flagship is advertised as "The Epic Hollister Store."

Out of the total capital expenditures for fiscal 2008 of A&F Co. (up to 445 million USD), approximately 300 million USD will be spent on new store construction and remodeling, including the HCO flagship. The company anticipates opportunities for opening HCO flagships "on an international basis" in the near future.

Morris vs. Abercrombie & Fitch Co.

In 2007, the lawsuit Morris vs. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. was settled. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. admitted that they should have not asked their California customers for personal identification information during credit card refund transactions. Customers who were asked this information during June 9, 2005 through May 31, 2007 may be entitled to receive gift cards. Since the settlement, A&F Co. brands' stores have stopped asking for this information for returns on purchases for which a credit card had been used.

External links


The above definition about the clothing company Hollister is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. The information source is from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia and was originally obtained from the following page address https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/hollister_co..  The definition has been modified by the Apparel Search Company in June 2009.  The rest of this page and other pages on Apparel Search are NOT under the free document license.

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