Apple is reportedly hiring individuals with backgrounds in the fashion and luxury industries to add to its retail staff ahead of the launch of the Apple Watch.
As reported by 9to5Mac:
9to5Mac has now learned from internal hiring documents that Apple is recruiting retail candidates this month with “a fashion or luxury background” suggesting Apple is preparing to deliver some changes to its retail stores in time for the Apple Watch’s early 2015 debut.
As well as a tech-driven wearable, the Apple Watch is being marketed as a fashion item. It makes sense, then, for Apple to reinforce its retail department with people who specialize in fashion and luxury.
Headed by former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s retail department is likely to introduce significant changes to the company’s retail stores to help promote the fashionable and luxurious Apple Watch.
Apple retail stores may adopt a manner of presentation similar to the glass showcase and hands-on display used by Apple during the Apple Watch’s special appearance at the French fashion retailer Colette in September.
That event was notably attended by Apple design chief Jony Ive, then newly hired Apple designer Marc Newson, Chanel head designer Karl Lagerfeld, and Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour. It was also attended by the Chinese supermodel Liu Wen, who later wore the Apple Watch on the cover of the November issue of Vogue China for the product’s editorial debut.
Apple is also expected to revamp its retail store displays to accommodate the entire Apple Watch line, which includes models with different sizes, color finishes, and band styles.
The Apple Watch is also set to come in a range of prices, confirmed to start at $349 for its basic version and rumored to go as high as $5,000 for the highest-end model.
The product is being marketed by Apple for launch in “early 2015.” Some reports have suggested that the company is hoping to launch it in time for Valentine’s Day. But Ahrendts has said in a recent message to Apple retail employees that the product is instead “coming in the spring.”
In addition to Ahrendts, Apple’s top employees with backgrounds in the fashion and luxury industries include former Yves Saint Laurent CEO Paul Deneve, former Tag Heuer sales executive Patrick Pruniaux, and former Gap marketing director Marcela Aguilar.
See also: Former Apple supply manager sentenced with prison time and fine over kickback scheme, Apple working to improve crowdsourcing features of its Maps software, and Apple apparently focused on gaming in its plans for virtual and augmented reality.