Beer, chocolate and jeans. People find comfort on a tight budget with these recession-proof products, with a spotlight on Davidson Chocolate, New Belgium Brewing Co., and True Religion jeans:
Overall, apparel sales have plummeted recently, with a decline of 6.3 percent for the three months ending with February 2009, according to the NPD group, which defines that time slot as “a key period of the economic downturn.” Jeans, however, saw a 2.3 percent increase for the period, with “premium jeans” costing more than $100 per pair seeing a 17 percent increase for 2008, according to the NPD group.
True Religion CEO Jeffrey Lubell says that trend has played out for his company, which reported a 15.4 increase in net sales for the first six months of 2009, plus increased profits for the same period of time. Lubell says the spike in sales came even as the company hiked up its prices for women’s and men’s jeans to $258 and $284 respectively–a $17 increase for women and $12 for men.
Consumers see jeans as “a value purchase in a tough economy,” Lubell says. “Jeans are not the kind of thing you wear once, like a formal dress. They never go out of style and only get better with time, so consumers will continue to pay top dollar for them.”
– from Entrepeneur