As has been noted here on and off, retailers are focusing on their core brands in order to maximize profitability in the recession. Reuters covers this trend with an overview of many brands finding this new focus: Abercrombie, Talbots, Finish Line and others have sold or closed brands to strengthen their main offerings.
Wisely, the Reuters article notes that this may lead to innovation and new energy within the sector. "Retailers are finally realizing that they have to get their own personality back," says NPD chief industry analyst Marshal Cohen in the piece. "They are beginning to recognize 'you know what, we have to go back to who our core customer is and deliver on the promise.'"