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Competitive Advantage in Fast Fashion

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Competitive Advantage in Fast Fashion
*CHAPTER* 3 COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE *IN THE* FAST FASHION Fast fashion is a term used to describe clothing collections which are based on the most recent fashion trends presented at Fashion Week in both the spring and the autumn of every year. These trends are designed and manufactured quickly and cheaply to allow the mainstream consumer to take advantage of current clothing styles at a lower price. This chapter highlights the sources of competitive advantage that may exist inside the field of fast fashion, as shown in Figure 3.1, studying in detail the major players who are part of: H&M, Gap, Zara and Benetton. {draw:frame} FIGURE 3.1 : THE SOURCES OF COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE *3.1 *SUPPLY CHAIN A supply chain is a system of organizations, people, technology, activities, information and resources involved in moving a product or service from supplier) to customer. Supply chain activities transform natural resources, raw materials and components into a finished product that is delivered to the end customer. In sophisticated supply chain systems, used products may re-enter the supply chain at any point where residual value is recyclable. Supply chains are increasingly being seen as integrated entities, and closer relationships between the organizations throughout the chain can bring competitive advantage, reduce costs, and help to maintain a loyal customer base. There are two main differences to value chains: Supply chains are more detailed since they incorporate not only activities. Supply chains connect intra-organizational value chains by products, services, and information flows. Supply chains underlie value-chains because, without them, no producer has the ability to give customers what they want, when and where they want, at the price they want. Producers compete with each other only through their supply chains, and no degree of improvement at the producer's end can make up for the deficiencies in a supply chain which reduce the

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