Clothing multiples has the largest market share in women’s wear sector in UK fashion market. Therefore the market competitiveness is extremely fierce in this sector. 2009 was one of the toughest ever years for retailers, as trading conditions deteriorated and consumer confidence reached a low. Expenditure on clothing fell by 0.5% to £35.3bn – the fist decline for more than 20 years. (Verdict report) With higher taxes and weak wage growth resulting in consumer reluctance to spend, it will be more challenging for these clothing multiples retailers. With concerns over the economy persisting, is value remaining the only in consumers’ minds? As Verdict report indicated: “ Instead of buying two or three cheap garments, soming will be enticed into buying one more expensive item, with the prices justified through superior quality or design detail, or even through great service rendered in store.” (Verdict report) Nowadays, company sustainability is a very big concern to the consumers, including ethical trading, good supplier resources and the impact to the nature environment. In this competitive situation, a successful company is not only offering good prices with good quality of products which makes less impact to the environment while producing but also providing great service to customers. This report will focus on the research of womenswear age group of 25-34 in clothing multiples market.
UK Fashion Market
The UK has richly-deserved reputation as one of the global leaders in fashion design and trendsetting. That said, the UK fashion industry is also much more than designer fashion, encompassing, as it does, a complex web of materials, textile production, clothing design, manufacturing, wholesaling, marketing and retailing of a broad set of fashion productions. In 2009, the UK fashion industry is estimated to have directly contributed £20.9 billion to the UK economy, or 1.7% of total UK GDP. The majority of this is derived though retail distribution, with our estimates suggesting that just over 22% of all retail GVA in the UK can be attributed to the UK fashion industry. When retail is excluded from the calculations, the industry’s GVA contribution is estimated to be £6.6 billion or 0.5% of total UK GDP. Employment in the UK fashion industry in 2009 is estimated to be around 816,000 or 2.7% of total UK employment. The majority of jobs created are in the retail sector, with wholesale activities accounting for around 7% of total employment and manufacturing of fashion items a further 9%. When retail is excluded from the estimated, the headline figure stands at 155,000 jobs or 0.5 of total UK employment. (British Council & Oxford Economic 2011)
New Look is one of the most well-recognised fast fashion brands in the UK, with high spontaneous brand awareness. New Look is always having a commitment to be ethical in the business, including ethical trading and animal welfare. New Look Group believes that it is never acceptable to harm animals in the manufacture or testing of its products. Because of this it has developed an animal welfare policy that covers all products retailed by New Look. The products are not using any animal fur, endangered species, leather or skin, live-plucked feather or down, Mongolian lambs fur and so on. New Look is striving to reduce the environmental impact of the products. In 2007 it launched their organic cotton range using cotton grown without the use of pesticides. In 2009 it launched another organic cotton range which included knitwear and received certification form the Soil Association. New Look also launched a range of tops made from bamboo, which is a naturally sustainable source. (New Look official website)