Matt Alexander, founder of men’s lifestyle site Need, has another online venture up his entrepreneurial sleeve. He is introducing Foremost, a small-batch American-made clothing brand and interview series that promises both high-quality, affordable clothing and in-depth looks at the world’s most striking personalities.
On February 11, Foremost launches its first collection with four items per gender — all designed and manufactured in Dallas, priced at around $50 apiece. The goal is to entice a younger clientele (i.e., Millennials) than its sibling’s.
“Foremost is our endeavor to bring the exclusivity and experience of Need to this younger audience of men and women,” Alexander says. “They’ll be able to affordably purchase high-quality clothing with all the hallmarks of a luxury brand — numbered, small-batch and American-made.
“Foremost is our endeavor to bring the exclusivity and experience of Need to this younger audience of men and women,” says founder Matt Alexander.
“And, if they choose to pursue higher-quality men’s clothing or other brands, we have Need for them.”
Taking a cue from Need, Foremost collections will remain small. And, considering the price point and broad appeal, Alexander expects the products to sell out quickly, as do Need’s. He’s also quick to point out the idea of “small batch” is not just hollow marketing speak; they will keep quantities low.
As for the storytelling, the site also will house four- to five-minute video interviews with people from all industries, including film, music, media and technology. Rumors are swirling about one six-packed Hollywood hunk, for example, but Alexander promises it’s not just celebrities.
“It’s a tool for discovering fascinating people,” he says, “so I’m casting a wide net.” His aim is to inspire a generation fascinated with the idea of starting their own companies by publishing profiles of people making their own way in life.
Yes, the interviewees will be wearing the clothing during the video shoot — but no “painful, horrible, lingering shots of the clothing,” he says.
Need and Foremost fall under the Edition Group umbrella, which is based in Dallas with Alexander at the helm. The divisions share staff and investors. When asked about the future of his Edition Group, Alexander is a bit reflective.
“When I started Need, I was frequently asked how it would ‘scale.’ This is a common thread in the venture world. Investors want to know how you can evolve from a million-dollar company to a billion-dollar company over a few years,” he says.
But Alexander soon realized Need’s appeal came from its focus on doing one thing exceptionally well. “The key must be staying true to its integrity,” he adds.
So rather than selling hundreds of thousands of products via Need, he decided that growing the business, and reaching different demographics and people, required building other interconnected niche brands.
“Foremost — and, to a lesser extent, Unbranded — are the first steps in that process,” he says.
“I’m not looking at what we can build for the future that’s measurably, tangibly and immutably good. Foremost is our new entry point, and men can graduate to Need. It provides an apt opportunity for us to begin exploring Need in the women’s space.”
Foremost launches at 11 am CST on February 11. Customers can get early access by submitting their email addresses via Foremostedition.com. Current Need members can log in on both sites.
Also on that day, Foremost and Need are introducing a paid membership tier at $5 per month, which gives customers free shipping, early access to all collections and a standing 10 percent discount across both sites.