When it comes to fashion retailing, the Spanish are at the top of their game.
When it comes to fashion retailing, the Spanish are at the top of their game. Mass-market retailers Inditex, Mango and Desigual all reported stellar performances this year.
There is no doubt that Inditex, owner of chains including Zara and Bershka, is viewed by those in the global clothing business as setting the gold standard, and has never appeared to have had the stock issues that so negatively affected Marks & Spencer’s recent womenswear sales.
Inditex’s manufacturing strategy is rubbing off on a raft of players, including Tesco, which plans to move some production to Morocco and Turkey so it can reduce risk.
Both Inditex and Mango (with 75% and 82% of sales from outside Spain respectively) are keen to maintain full control of stores and product even through rapid growth. Enric Casi, Mango’s managing director, announced a hefty target of 30% growth for 2012 with a focus on standalone stores, and Inditex has always limited franchising activity.
Don’t ignore other Spanish chains either, such as Blanco, Nice Things and Bimba & Lola. All plan to grow globally as there is such limited scope in their domestic market.
Value retailers should also watch out for low-priced chain Shana.
The question is, is there space for all of them?
- Isabel Cavill, Senior retail analyst at global retail intelligence provider Planet Retail