Fast Fashion, the art of liquidity

The Fashion disruption Polish-born sociologist Zigmunt Bauman described our modern life as “liquid modernity“, where change is occurring more and more rapidly. Social entities are flexible, plastic. “Each new structure which replaces the previous one as soon as it is declared old-fashioned and past its use-by date is only another momentary settlement – acknowledged as temporary … More Fast Fashion, the art of liquidity

Sustainable Fashion case study: SHEIN. 2

Continuing with previous examples of sustainable initiatives, Shein established in 2021, a 629,150 sq. ft. Innovation Center, a destination for the research and development of new waste-saving and efficiency-optimizing technologies necessary for scaling among their supplier partners.

Shein is moving forward with the circular economy and alliances. In 2022, Shein became a signatory of World Circular Textiles Day, a coalition of brands, suppliers and other organizations who share a mission to drive the fashion and textiles industry toward full circularity by 2050. Through such initiative they expect to continue to measure and mitigate their own textile waste and collaborate with other industry leaders. … More Sustainable Fashion case study: SHEIN. 2

Sustainable Fashion case study: SHEIN. 1

I hope you enjoyed the holidays! Vacations are a good time for reading, staying updated, or continuing our education. In my case, I wanted to recommend the Sustainable Fashion course organized by Copenhagen Business School. Taking advantage of the work done, I’m sharing a portion of my final essay about SHEIN sustainability strategy…

In April 2022, it was reported that Shein was seeking over $1 billion in funding at a $100 billion valuation, according to Bloomberg report. It was a surprise for many people specializing in the fashion industry because the valuation was slightly higher than the one combining the leading global players: Inditex and H&M. More surprising because it was the first time a pure-player, fashion marketplace was competing directly with retailers that had thousands of stores worldwide combined to online presence. In fact, I would say that Inditex has developed the more advanced omnichannel structure in fashion, and probably in the retail business. According to Modaes, Shein revenues were around €22,7 Billion in 2022. In the case of confirming these data, it would mean Shein is the second largest fashion retailer after Inditex. … More Sustainable Fashion case study: SHEIN. 1

Fashion Retail: Supply Chain Trends

It is a pleasure to publish my latest contribution in the RBC Capital Markets Expert Call, a collaboration that started years ago. I talked to Richard Chamberlain, Retail Director at RBC, about the latest trends in Supply Chain, which have been impacted by the recent events of COVID and the war in Ukraine. The global … More Fashion Retail: Supply Chain Trends

Fashion Goes Tech: The Rubik Model and Patagonia

Part II of Supply Chain in Fashion The Rubik Model Today, retail is not only about the “what” (product) but about the “how” (experience). It’s a configuration model like the Rubik cube, a flexible model with many possibilities: standard collections, capsules, customization, renting, resale, subscription boxes, and so on. The customer is at the center … More Fashion Goes Tech: The Rubik Model and Patagonia

Fashion Goes Tech: Supply Chain

This article is the continuation of Planning in Fashion, where design meets operations, described in Fashion Goes Tech. According to Gartner, a supply chain is a group of functions and processes focused on optimizing the flow of products, services and related information from sources of supply to customers or points of demand. It stretches across multiple tiers … More Fashion Goes Tech: Supply Chain

Fashion Goes Tech: Digital Transformation in Fashion (4) – part 2/2

It seems Covid-19 pandemic is ending but uncertainty is the new norm and adapting to it is essential. Fashion, like other industries, is adapting to digital transformation by redefining customer engagement and optimizing operations across new business models with a new approach to product development where sustainability and traceability are mandatory. This article is the … More Fashion Goes Tech: Digital Transformation in Fashion (4) – part 2/2

Fashion Industry Update Q4 2022

I’ve been following RBC Capital Markets, specially their retail insights, for a while. During my last expert call with their European team, we discussed about how important is to be agile in such uncertain times. Fast and agile from design to delivery, implementing new processes boosted by digital assets and developing a new corporate culture. … More Fashion Industry Update Q4 2022

Fashion Goes Tech: Digital Transformation in Fashion (4) – part 1/2

Following with Fashion business strategy and operations insights from Fashion Goes Tech, my latest book on how technology is empowering retail businesses. Today, we move forward across the value chain phases within the business of fashion: Planning. Charles Higgins Kepner said that successful merchandising incorporates the 5Bs: “the right product, in the right place, at … More Fashion Goes Tech: Digital Transformation in Fashion (4) – part 1/2

Fashion Goes Tech: Digitization in Retail (3)

A few months ago, TFR commented about the merchandise lifecycle and how retailers, specially apparel ones, deal with stock managament. Following the value chain process, this article aims to describe one of the main areas within the business of fashion: Designing. Designing (part 1/2) The Design Department is probably the most creative area within the … More Fashion Goes Tech: Digitization in Retail (3)

Fashion Retail Outlook: Expert Call with Alfonso Segura x RBC Capital Markets (part 2)

This is the second part of my latest call with Richard Chamberlain, Head of Consumer Discretionary research at RBC Capital Markets Europe. The live session was exclusive to RBC clients, but these are the notes from the meeting. You can read the first part here RBC: How have supply chain bottlenecks changed the way fashion … More Fashion Retail Outlook: Expert Call with Alfonso Segura x RBC Capital Markets (part 2)

Fashion Retail Outlook: Expert Call with Alfonso Segura x RBC Capital Markets

I’m excited to have participated again to an expert call with Richard Chamberlain, Head of Consumer Discretionary research at RBC Capital Markets Europe. Richard covers the General Retail sector and oversee the Luxury Goods and Internet sectors. We started our collaboration a few years ago and I really appreciate RBC Capital Markets insights which give me deep … More Fashion Retail Outlook: Expert Call with Alfonso Segura x RBC Capital Markets

Fashion Goes Tech: Digitization in Retail (2)

The Merchandise Life Cycle In Fashion, products tend to have a short product lifecycle due to fast changes in trends and demand. Fast Fashion accelerated the traditional business model (e.g. usually 2 collection per year), creating a perceived obsolescence and making supply chains even more complex in a context of trade liberalization that started in … More Fashion Goes Tech: Digitization in Retail (2)

The Fashion Retailer Tech Ecosystem is growing

The Fashion Retailer‘s collaborations and network is growing! Since the blog was founded in 2017, we met, talked or chatted with amazing people, mostly executives and founders of fashion technology companies like Nextail, Heuritech or Zliide. Those essential conversations broaden my perspective on how technologies are making businesses more effective and were key when writing … More The Fashion Retailer Tech Ecosystem is growing

How Cool is Sustainability in Fashion

FASHION SUSTAINABILITY IS THE NEW COOL Last week, during a talk with investors, suppliers and retailers, I was asked if Fast Fashion can really be sustainable. We could include other business segments like luxury in this question. Fashion sustainability is the New Cool and is going mainstream, but some brands are still destroying products as a … More How Cool is Sustainability in Fashion

Digital Fashion Platforms: Zara meets Netflix

Last week, Brooke Roberts-Islam wrote “Zara Meets Netflix” (Forbes). In others words, a business model based on “speed-to-market (fast-fashion), customer centricity and excellent operations” meets the “platform economy”. The article mentions FINESSE, a startup that replaces designers and buyers with data, describing itself as “Zara meets Netflix”. The startup, that raised $4.5 million for AI … More Digital Fashion Platforms: Zara meets Netflix

Values-led collaborations in fashion

Coronavirus is impacting our democracies, our economies, our individual and social behaviors… When it comes to fashion, the virus is showing how difficult is to manage a seasonal business in such volatile and uncertain environment. Covid is killing cash flows in one of the most inventory-intensive businesses. Values-led collaborations in the sustainable era When it … More Values-led collaborations in fashion

Urban Fashion Deserts?

Dollar Stores, Urban Deserts, Sustainability and Black Lives Matter I’ve been following Dollar Stores (Retail store that sells general merchandise, such as apparel, automotive parts, dry goods, hardware, home furnishings, and a selection of groceries. It usually sells them at discounted prices, sometimes at one or several fixed price points, such as one dollar – Wikipedia) … More Urban Fashion Deserts?

Coronavirus and Fashion (2/2)

This article is the continuation of Coronavirus and Fashion (1/2), an overview of the short term strategy to overcome the Covid-19 crisis, the biggest challenge to face. Once the bleeding has stopped, companies will need to adapt their businesses for uncertain times. It will require anticipation, flexibility and agility. It’s time to breathe fresh air … More Coronavirus and Fashion (2/2)

Tackling Fashion Industry’s Waste Problem

As mentioned in Fashion Retail Safari, New Retail is about new processes, new analytical capabilities, innovation, technology, new store formats, …, that respond to digital generation trends such as experience, sustainability and authenticity. We live in very volatile times – weather extremes, political distruptions (e.g. Brexit) and public health threats (e.g. COVID-19) – and today, … More Tackling Fashion Industry’s Waste Problem

Legacy brands embrace fashion resale

Burberry announced recently a partnership with luxury resale site The RealReal, to promote circular economy in fashion and sustainability. Resale is a rising trend within the Fashion as a Service landscape. It’s about nownership and environmental consumption, contributing to increase product lifespan. Many legacy retailers are supporting circular economy, even fast-fashion brands selling to mass-market … More Legacy brands embrace fashion resale

Resale Fashion

The Resale Fashion business should be considered in relation to the landscape of Fashion as a Service (FaaS), or how experience is getting over product ownership. In previous posts, TFR already introduced subscription boxes model and rental clothing including success cases such as The Trunk Club or Rent the Runway. When describing Circular Fashion, reuse … More Resale Fashion

Fashion as a Service (2)

Continuing Fashion as a Service – subscription boxes model previous post, the following article comments on rental clothing. Millennials are prioritizing experiences over tangible products. They want to feel the adrenaline but without ties, and the sharing economy is helping them to satisfy wider needs like sustainability. Millennial, born-digital companies, are understanding the Experience Economy, creating business … More Fashion as a Service (2)

Mass-market fashion retailers

Extending the review of luxury organizations, niche players from the long tail in fashion and sustainable brands, it´s time to talk about leading “fast-fashion” retailers. Mass-market fashion retailers are localized at the bottom of the Maslow´s pyramid of needs. Those brands´ business models are based on high traffic, high volume and low margin. But some … More Mass-market fashion retailers

Circular Economy in Fashion

Millennials are driving companies to sustainable practices even if their business model is based on volume, low margins. New generations demand for sustainable products and a visible and transparent value chain: from “sheep to shop”, something that blockchain is already enabling. Another interesting trend to mention is nownership, or the end of ownership as repair and rental … More Circular Economy in Fashion

The Fashion Pyramid of brands

Many fashion retailers define their strategy starting from their value proposition and key positioning levers (assortment, price, experience, speed, channels…) to differentiate themselves from competition. It’s part of their DNA but also define their purpose and business model. The segmentation of fashion brands is illustrated on a pyramid where the more expensive brands are on … More The Fashion Pyramid of brands

The future of fashion store formats

The future of Fashion Retail – New concept stores: finding inspiration in the Grocery industry In my previous job as strategy and operations consultant, I have been involved in many projects concerning grocery retailers in South America and Europe. It was great to see how this industry, with such low margins and high traffic, is optimizing … More The future of fashion store formats

Nike, the new high-end fashion brand

The fashion industry nature stresses the balance sheet, very sensitive between days of payment (days of payables) and collection period (days of receivables), with a high level of uncertainty because of fashion trends (if the customer likes the product or not), weather conditions (a warm winter will let stores with high levels of coats and jackets … More Nike, the new high-end fashion brand

Fashion Lab, the creativity Mecca

When I decided to start this blog, a couple of years ago, the main objective was to link art and science, as fashion is art and retail is, probably, operations. Fashion experts differenciate fashion companies from apparel retailers, but the business complexity behind these two models is quite unkown. Traditionally (1980-Now), there used to coexist … More Fashion Lab, the creativity Mecca

Amazon Fashion Pop-Up Store

Step by step, Amazon is building its Fashion business with the first “Amazon Fashion” Pop-up Store in Europe. I guess many others will open soon, and maybe, its first retail permanent store too. But, to succeed, Amazon will need to acquire much expertise in the fashion business industry. The Pop-up store opened “5 days, 5 nights” last … More Amazon Fashion Pop-Up Store

The New Fashion Retail Paradigm

While reading the latest Monocle´s report on Global Retail: Let´s talk shops, I decided it was the right time to take a step back and have perspective on the latest news that are impacting the fashion retail industry. This is just a sample of some of the latest topics and news that I feel “key” … More The New Fashion Retail Paradigm

Fashion Co-Creation: As-a-Service Liquid Design Model

Liquidity, everything is getting liquid. Bauman described our modern life as “liquid modernity“, where change is happening faster than ever. Relations, connections, organizations are ephemeral, flexible, plastic. As Politics, Economy and the organization of Society, businesses are already including “liquidity” in their value chain, from defining processes to defining their resources and capabilities. In the … More Fashion Co-Creation: As-a-Service Liquid Design Model

Blockchain in Fashion Retail

This is the 4th post about Fashion Technology or Fashtech in The Fashion Retailer. If Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and 3D Printing are some of the technologies that represent the 4th industrial revolution, Blockchain is the most trendy right now, and cryptocurrencies (e.g. Bitcoin) has something to do with it… What about Blockchain for Fashion … More Blockchain in Fashion Retail

3D Printing in Fashion Retail

This is the 3rd post about Fashion Technology or Fashtech for The Fashion Retailer: 3D Printing (or Knitting) for Fahion Retail. New technologies are enabling disruptive scenarios in the “Industry 4.0” for Fashion. The two first posts about Fashion 4.0 were focusing on Artificial Intelligence in Fashion and Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality in Fashion. … More 3D Printing in Fashion Retail

Artificial Intelligence in Fashion Retail

Fashion Retail is adapting it´s business model at the pace of digitalization. As Darwin said, it is the most adaptable to change that will survive. After reading IESE insight “5 Building Blocks for Cyber-Physical Value Chains”, from Professor M. Sachon (Issue 33, Second Quarter 2017), I decided to start writing a series of articles about … More Artificial Intelligence in Fashion Retail

Is Data killing creativity in Fashion?

ANALYTICS IS KILLING CREATIVITY The Fashion Industry is evolving as retail landscape is also in reconstruction. Big data, machine learning and technology 4.0 are leadind the change and users are accelerating it thru e-commerce and the online arena. All the steps and participants along the fashion value chain are impacted and evolution is a need … More Is Data killing creativity in Fashion?

A few words with a Master in Fashion Operations

When people hear about fashion, they expect a guru or a designer wearing funny clothing. This is part of it, but some would argue that the main competitive advantage of international retailers, such as Zara, is Operations. In fact, Zara doesn´t have a best-in-class designer like Gucci has Alessandro Michele. Inditex best-in-class business model is … More A few words with a Master in Fashion Operations