Harry’s, the men’s grooming brand, was founded in 2013 as an entirely digital play. The founders, Andy Katz-Mayfield and Jeffrey Raider, purchased a factory in Germany, so the company would be fully vertically integrated and they could control the quality of the products produced. The goal was to sell high-end razors and shaving cream without the hidden retail markup, allowing it to compete with brands like Gillette and Schick that must mark up products to sell them at drug and grocery stores.
So it came as a bit of a surprise when Harry’s started appearing on the shelves of Target stores in 2016. The brand is expanding even further by entering Walmart stores later this year. According to Katz-Mayfield, the goal of this expansion is to be where Harry’s customers are and since 90% of the U.S. population lives within 10 miles of Walmart, this gives Harry’s a shot at becoming a household name.
For Walmart, selling Harry’s–a hip, digitally native millennial razor brand–fits with a larger pattern. Over the last few years, it has acquired Modcloth and Bonobos, two brands that were born on the internet and appealed to urban millennials. Walmart appears to be interested in winning over the next generation of consumers by offering products and brands that they like. It is also leveraging its status as the biggest brick-and-mortar retailer in America to allow digital brands to dramatically expand their presence across the country.