They may buy Trunk Club.
It was reported this week that Nordstrom may be in talks to purchase Trunk Club, the Chicago-based men’s style start-up. The service handpicks high-end clothing for its customers after a “getting to know you” session with a stylist.
Nordstrom is known for investing in fashion and tech start-ups. In 2013, Nordstrom invested in gift-giving service Wantful which has since ceased operations after funding was suddenly pulled. Nordstrom also invested in Bonobos (which recently secured $55M in new funding) and fully acquired flash sales site HauteLook.
Nordstrom seems to be committed to investing in cool, fashion x tech start-ups. Note their apparent benefits of partnering with Forerunner Ventures, the San Francisco VC firm that invests in everything you wish you did (re: BirchBox, Serena & Lily, Warby Parker). In addition to their well-known Bonobos relationship, Nordstrom was the first retailer to bring Wanelo into the physical store experience.
It behooves all parties involved: major retailer gets buzz and access to innovation, start-up gets support from established retailer and investment fund benefits financially from this cyclical success.