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Indies hold budget to fend off high street

Young fashion womenswear independent retailers polled by Drapers dedicated as much as 50% of their budgets to in-season buying for spring 10 in an effort to keep up with the fast-moving fast fashion high street.

83% of women’s independents surveyed for this week’s young fashion Indicator said they had held back more budget for short order buying for spring 10 than ever before.

“The danger in investing too much in forward order is the hot new trends on offer from some brands are on the high street now at a discount, and once we get them in they have lost their premium,” said one Midlands-based indie that sells both menswear and womenswear.

Primark seems to be growing and it is here to stay. All of us in the independent sector have suffered and the high street shops have changed people’s perception of what things cost,” he said.

58% of men’s young fashion indies also held back more budget for spring 10 in-season buying.

Lee Appleby, owner of the Locker Room at Haywards Heath in West Sussex, which sells Superdry and Lipsy, said: “I kept back more than half of my women’s budget and 20% of my men’s budget for spring 10. The high street is changing so quickly and you have to keep up. It gives you a competitive advantage if you can change product quickly.”

Sharron Edwards, manager of Fanny Adams in Halifax, West Yorkshire, which sells Religion and Miss Sixty, added: “Anyone who says they’re not [dedicating more to short order] is lying. We need to hold back some of the budget because women’s fashion changes so quickly.”

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