Case | HBS Case Collection | February 2015 (Revised April 2016)

Quincy Apparel (A)

by Thomas R. Eisenmann and Lisa Mazzanti


Quincy Apparel designs, manufactures and sells work apparel for young professional women that offers the fit and feel of high-end brands at a lower price. In late 2012, Quincy's cofounders are debating how to approach a crucial board meeting. Their seed-stage startup is running low on cash; to survive, they will need more capital, probably in the form of a bridge loan from existing investors, who will attend the board meeting. Quincy's sales have been strong, but due to the company's novel sizing scheme, which provides more measurement dimensions than typical women's clothing, inventory is high and operations are complex. Operational challenges have made it difficult to consistently deliver better fit, and merchandise return rates are high. With more time and capital, the cofounders are confident they can resolve operational problems. But will they be able to persuade investors to provide more capital?

Keywords: e-commerce; retail; failure; online retail; women's apparel; entrepreneurship; Business Startups; Business Plan; Business Model; Entrepreneurship; Production; Retail Industry; Technology Industry; New York (city, NY);


Eisenmann, Thomas R., and Lisa Mazzanti. "Quincy Apparel (A)." Harvard Business School Case 815-067, February 2015. (Revised April 2016.)