Arron Moss, Co-founder of young fashion retailer Divine Trash in Buxton, Derbyshire.
After six years working on the finance side of the business, my greatest challenge has always been budgets. How do I improve the way buying budgets are determined? I’ve spent months trying to develop a method for controlling the distribution of budgets for brands based on historical sell-through.
After great progress, the concept got shattered. We received deliveries for brands we had invested heavily in due to success last season, and before we knew it the major retailers were slashing prices, having had the same stock several weeks earlier. This is a frequent occurrence. As if forward ordering isn’t hard enough. Large multiples have more buying and negotiating power, so are likely to receive stock earlier for the optimum stock turn and price.
To compound this disadvantage, we sought out short-order brands for fashion and accessories. In the past six months, two of the four short-order brands have contacted us to tell us to remove products from sale to maintain brand integrity, even though we are upholding suggested selling prices. How do indies have a chance? Do we simply sit quietly and accept what is effectively a bad deal?
In an industry where timing means everything, we’re going to try and reassess our relationship with brands.