Levi’s first home collection deepens Target relationship

Jeans maker Levi Strauss & Co. is deepening its partnership with Target Corp. by launching its first-ever home collection at the discount chain.

Levi’s limited-time-only 100-item collection of denim-inspired tableware, quilts, pillows and other items will be launched on Target’s website and most Target stores on Feb. 28.

Target started selling Levi’s Denizen low-price brand in 2011 and then began carrying its premium Red Tab brand in 2019. It will be expanding the Red Tab brand to 500 stores by fall of this year. The move is yet another blow to department stores, which have been struggling even more during the pandemic.

Target CEO Brian Cornell and Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh told The Associated Press they believe the Levi products, which also include some clothing, will be collectors’ items.

For Target, it’s the latest strategic partnership with a major brand and comes as Target extends its strong sales streak through the pandemic. The Minneapolis-based discounter signed a deal late last year with beauty chain Ulta to open more than 100 beauty shops by middle of this year. In 2019, it forged a partnership with Disney & Co to open Disney-branded shops at its stores. Cornell said that strategic partnerships “have been key to Target’s success" and has set it apart from rivals.

For San Francisco-based Levi, the collaboration reflects how the company has been diversifying its label away from department stores and focusing on retailers that drive customer traffic. Bergh said that the expansion with Target has helped the brand reach a broader customer base, but he cautions that the jeans maker has no intention of going into the home business in a permanent way.

“This is unexpected Levi’s stuff that they are going to find inside Target, and it’s going to surprise and delight them," Bergh said.