The UK’s fast fashion menswear market has become increasingly competitive over the last few years – consider the launch of Boohoo Man and dedicated New Look menswear stores.
However, this has not deterred Missguided founder Nitin Passi, who this week announced plans to launch a dedicated website for the company’s menswear brand, Mennace.
Mennace is currently sold exclusively on Asos. It will be interesting to see how Passi approaches selling directly, and whether the strategies used to make Missguided such a success can be repurposed.
The Missguided brand is built on bright pink, unicorns and girl power. Its tongue-in-cheek approach sends a message of fashionable feminism, and Mennace will have to build a similarly strong brand personality.
Having a look at the website this week, I found an interview with Passi explaining the ethos of the streetwear and athleisure brand. Alongside repeated use of the word “disruption”, he introduces the hashtag #LeadDon’tFollow. Mennace takes a similar approach to Missguided womenswear: celebrating independence and individual creativity.
This crops up repeatedly in discussions about how to target Generation Z, who don’t follow trends in the traditional sense, but rather take a trend and interpret it in their own way. It is a clever move for Missguided and Mennace to tap into this through their content and social media strategies.
Looking at the Mennace product as it is presented on the website, it seems more pared back than Missguided’s womenswear offer. This impression is underlined by the website design, which is slick and clean – all images are black and white. The selection of models celebrates diversity in a way that is still quite rare in fashion.
The site does not officially launch until September, but it already has a clear branding. Given Missguided’s emphasis on girl power, it made sense to give Mennace a separate name and identity – although that means it is entering the market as a new brand, with all the challenges that brings. However, the menswear market is predicted to outperform womenswear by 2020, so Mennace gives Passi the opportunity to diversify his business and take advantage of this opportunity.