New Nike Store Makes Game For East LA Shoppers | Eastsider on the go
EAST LOS ANGELES – Many flashy Nike stores are located in upscale malls or affluent communities, such as The Grove in the Fairfax District, Fashion Island in Newport Beach as well as a Niketown in Beverly Hills. But this week, the athletic footwear and apparel company is opening a store away from those swanky venues. On Thursday, Nike will hold a grand opening for a new ‘community store’ on Whittier Boulevard in East LA
Set amid mostly mom-and-pop shops and restaurants that cater to Latino shoppers, the Nike store spans nearly a city block along Whittier Boulevard at McDonnell Avenue. The orange Nike swoosh logo is mounted on the gray metal facade in full view of the Whittier Boulevard arch.
What is Nike doing on Whittier Boulevard in predominantly Latino, low-income East Los Angeles?
“We know our consumers and they live all over LA County,” a company spokeswoman said. “It was important for us to reach them where they are.”
In addition to selling athletic shoes and apparel, Nike officials said they also want their East LA community store to build strong ties to the region through local hiring initiatives, outreach efforts, and more. volunteerism, local grants and sports programs.
It will be some time before Nike’s impact on Whittier Boulevard is known. The department store could serve as a major anchor point, attracting more pedestrians and investment to the shopping street. But it could also pose competitive challenges for other retailers, including Skechers and WSS, both of which operate large athletic footwear and apparel stores on Whittier Boulevard.
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