In this episode of Women in Retail Talks, Senior Content Strategist Ashley Chiaradio chats with Erin Fujimoto, co-founder and head of merchandising at Tommy John, a comfort-focused lifestyle brand committed to addressing the real problems men and women have with their clothing. Listen in as Fujimoto discusses her career background and how the idea for Tommy John came about when her husband (and co-founder) was struggling to find an undershirt that fit correctly. As a result of that experience, Tommy John has made it a point to prioritize fabric, fit and function over style and aesthetics, giving customers the most comfortable and highest-quality garments. The brand’s commitment to product quality has been integral in it being able to create a loyal customer base.

Fujimoto talks about the success Tommy John experienced last year when it launched a women’s line, including why she was hesitant to expand into the women’s category, and why she believes the company sold through six months of units in only six weeks. More recently, Tommy John began offering a line of bras that fit naturally with its newest marketing campaign, “Don’t Adjust.” In addition, Fujimoto discusses the importance of listening to your customers. She noted that Tommy John shoppers had been requesting a women’s line for years before the brand entered the category, and that listening paid off. Lastly, Fujimoto talks about the female mentors who have helped her throughout her life, why women advocating for other women is so essential, and her future plans for Tommy John.

Erin Fujimoto started her career in finance as vice president, financial advisor at J.P Morgan, but then pivoted to start a small skincare brand. Along with her husband, Tom, she founded Tommy John and never looked back. Neither really had experience in the retail and apparel space. They (well, Tom) knew what the industry was lacking in men’s T-shirts and set out to create it. Fujimoto is now the head of merchandising at Tommy John, though she has held essentially every role at the company in the decade since its founding.

Date: November 5, 2019

Credits: Erin Fujiumoto

Duration: 19:48