Bebe Stores

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bebe Stores, Inc.
Industry Retail
Founded 1976
Founder Manny Mashouf
Headquarters 400 Valley Drive,
Brisbane, California,
United States
Number of locations
Key people
Manny Mashouf, founder
Jim Wiggett, CEO
Products Apparel
Revenue Increase US$603 million (FY 2009)[1]
Increase US$16.6 million (FY 2009)[1]
Increase US$12.6 million (FY 2009)[1]
Total assets Decrease US$571 million (FY 2009)[2]
Total equity Decrease US$459 million (FY 2009)[2]
Number of employees
4,433 (2008)

Bebe Stores, Inc (stylized bebe stores and pronounced as "Bee-Bee")[4] is a women's retail clothier established in 1976. Founded by Manny Mashouf, who emigrated from Iran to the United States in the early 1970s, where he opened the first Bebe store in San Francisco[5] during a time when three categories dominated the women's wear market: junior, bridge and misses. The brand develops and produces a line of women's apparel and accessories, which it markets under the Bebe, BebeSport, and Bebe Outlet names.

The company operates 312 stores, of which 215 are Bebe stores, 32 are 2b Bebe stores, 64 are BebeSport stores (this includes bebe/bebeSport 2-in-1 stores) and one is a Bebe accessories store. These stores are located in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Canada. Bebe also has an international division in Lebanon, Kuwait, Egypt, Israel, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Turkey, and UAE.

Mashouf owns approximately 55% of the company.[6]

Name and inception

The name 'Bebe' (pronounced as Bee-Bee) is a portmanteau derived from the soliloquy from Shakespeare's play Hamlet in which the eponymous Prince ponders:To be or not to be[7] The name is never capitalized as it is a combination of two verbs forming a metaphorical verb as whole. Founder Manny Mashouf came up with the name after a conversation that was had at a party he attended in San Francisco during the 1970s shortly before he established the brand.


Bebe stores headquarters in Brisbane
A Bebe store, at Aventura Mall in Aventura, Florida

Bebe: the first store was opened in San Francisco in 1976.

BebeSport: the company launched BebeSport in year 2003 to focus on active lifestyle via sportswear, tops, sweaters, outerwear, and accessories. In 2009, BebeSport stores were converted to PH8 with BebeSport product now sold in Bebe and 2b Bebe stores.

PH8: The company converted BebeSport stores to PH8 stores in November 2009. PH8 offers casual weekend apparel, work-out attire and accessories such as bags, shoes and seasonal items.

2b Bebe: Bebe's outlet division provide clearance merchandise, Bebe logo merchandise and special cuts produced under the 2b Bebe label exclusively for the outlet stores.[8]

As of 2012, Bebe has launched a bridal wear line available in stores throughout United States. Additional bridal salons were under consideration however the venture was eventually abandoned due to poor sales. The bridal wear line debuted with a collection designed by Project Runway runner up Rami Kashou.[9]


To further brand exposure, the company signs celebrities for ad campaigns. Brenda Song was the face of Bebe's 2007 ad campaign. The company signed actresses Rebecca Romijn as the face of Bebe from Spring 2007 through Spring 2008 and Eva Longoria as the face of BebeSport from spring 2007 through spring 2009.[8] Mischa Barton was the face of Bebe's 2006 ad campaign.

In 2007, Bebe selected advertising agency MD70, with Creative Direction by Fredrik Peterhoff to produce Bebe Holiday and Spring 2009, Bebe Sports and Bebe Accessories Spring 2009 campaign.[10] Photographed by Camilla Åkrans, styled by Julia von Boehm and shot in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, the Bebe Spring campaign features model Anne Marie van Dijk. The spring campaign appeared in the February and March titles of Vogue, Elle, Cosmopolitan, and Glamour, as well as billboards and phone kiosks in New York, Los Angeles, and Las Vegas. A campaign video will run in stores and online at Bebe Video YouTube channel.


Bebe has semi-annual collection preview events where clients are invited to preview the latest collections at bebe stores. Additionally, the company partners with national and regional magazines to host events benefiting non-profit organizations.[1]

Vertical integration

The company designs and develops the majority of merchandise in-house with outsourced manufacturing.


On August 9, 2010, Emilia Fabricant became president of Bebe Stores. She reported directly to CEO Manny Mashouf and her core responsibilities included oversight of design, marketing, merchandising, Internet sales, production, and retail planning. In 2012 she left to take a position at Aéropostale. Mashouf decided to take a lesser role as a non-executive chairman and hired Steve Birkhold to take the reins as CEO. Birkhold has extensive experience in retail as U.S CEO of Diesel Jeans and CEO of Lacoste.[11] Upon Birkhold's resignation in June 2014, the board of directors appointed Jim Wiggett, currently Chief Executive Officer of Jackson Hole Group, as Interim Chief Executive Officer of bebe. On December 15, 2014, bebe announced that Wiggett had been named Chief Executive Officer and appointed to the company's board of directors effective immediately.[12]


External links