Weight Watchers is trying to reinvent itself as more than dieting. They recently rebranded as WW and began positioning themselves as more of a lifestyle brand. Department store Kohl’s is looking for new ways to draw customers away from online retailers and into its physical stores.
Now, the two companies are teaming up for a pilot program in the Chicago area. Called WW Studio, Kohl’s will launch an 1,800 square foot studio within its store and offer wellness workshops. Kohl’s will also begin selling the WW Healthy Kitchen products, branded kitchenware, and cookware later this year.
Kohl’s is evolving in two specific ways. It is trying to establish itself as a retail location for health and wellness brands. At the same, it is trying new ways to maximize floor space.
Kohl’s has invested in partnerships with other active brands, including Nike, Under Armour, and Adidas. It showcases Fitbits, Apple watches, and brands like Sleepwell and Vitamix. In its recent earnings report, the company said active products made up 20% of its sales last year.
The department store chain is also testing other ways to drive traffic to locations and use the square footage it already owns. Amazon shoppers can return purchases they bought online to some of Kohl’s stores. The company is also testing a partnership with Aldi, a discount grocery chain.
The President and CEO of WW – formerly known as Weight Watchers – said the partnership is a new way for the company to meet people where they already are. “We know the Kohl’s customer is also our customer,” Mindy Grossman said in a news release.