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Nordstrom to Sell Online E-Tailer Bonobos' Pants Line

Nordstrom is not only investing in a venture capital round for online retailer Bonobos but it is also planning to sell the clothing—specifically men's pants—in its stores.

Nordstrom is investing $16.4 million in Bonobos, TechFlash reports.  As part of the deal it will also sell Bonobos clothing at Nordstrom full-line stores and on Nordstrom.com.

Mutually Beneficial

Based on statements each company has made, both retailers intend to take advantage of their respective strengths. Bonobos points to a common woe in e-commerce—the inability of buyers to actually try out the product.  All Things D reports Andy Dunn, founder and CEO of Bonobos, as saying “we understand there are people who still want to touch and feel clothing before they purchase. We realized we needed help expanding beyond our web-only roots.”

Nordstom’s Online Bona Fides

While that is hardly unusual for a small online retailer to be eager to leverage a national chain like Nordstrom, it is interesting to see Nordstrom feels the same way. Bonobos is a pioneer in leveraging the internet Jamie Nordstrom, Nordstrom Direct president, told Tech Flash.

“Our investment with Bonobos will enable Nordstrom to participate in the young company’s phenomenal growth, and we look forward to what we can learn from each other as we build the business together.”

Nordstrom has been steadily building out its e-commerce initiatives so its interest in Bonobos is not completely surprising.  In March, as one example, it launched with Joseph Abboud a B2B iPad app called Made-to-Measure that lets Nordstrom customers browse a full range of Joseph Abboud fabrics, select a style preference and silhouette and then order a suit. The order is then immediately placed with the Joseph Abboud factory in New Bedford, MA.

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