As fast fashion retailers expand, they are putting greater competitive
pressure on apparel retailers such as Old Navy and Aéropostale,
according to a recent report from Coleman Research Group.
Hali, vice president and director of retail consulting at Coleman, also
said this segment of the market, which serves the price-sensitive
shopper, is under pressure by mass retailers such as Target Corp. and
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. — companies that are pushing trendier apparel at
lower price points.
"Fast food at inexpensive prices was the new
mode for restaurants in the Seventies, today it is fast fashion at
inexpensive prices that has created a whole new genre of retail," Hali
said in the report.
By incorporating low-cost fashion and
continuous newness into their merchandise mix, stores such as Forever
21 and H&M, as well as Target, Wal-Mart and Kohl"s, have become
evident that it is not enough to sell merchandise at inexpensive
prices. The merchandise must be compelling, on trend, of good quality
and frequent shipments." Jane Hali, Coleman
my opinion, Old Navy"s business started to decline when H&M
increased their number of stores," Hali said. "Old Navy began by
selling basics at low prices, while H&M is selling fashion at low
Wal-Mart, Target and Kohl"s have been serious about
taking their merchandise into new and trendier markets, with exclusive
products and brand launches. Target has been successfully promoting
their Isaac Mizrahi clothing and accessories line, while Kohl"s snagged
an exclusive deal with the teen and contemporary Candies brand.
fierce competition in the European ‘value" market, retailers have
perfected the art of cheap private label or exclusive brand lines,"
Hali said. "These stores are changing the way Americans think about and
shop for clothes."
Next year, American shoppers will have more
choices. Mango and Topshop, two European fashion chains, will be
landing in the U.S. over the next 12 months. Mango targets the 18- to
35-year-old demographic with price points ranging from $20 to $250. The
company, which already has two stores on the West Coast, plans on
opening its U.S. flagship in SoHo in the fall of 2007.
owned by the Arcadia Group, will be opening its first store in New York
City in the fall of 2007. The company currently operates over 300
stores in the U.K.
"In our opinion it is evident that it is not enough to sell merchandise
at inexpensive prices. The merchandise must be compelling, on trend, of
good quality and frequent shipments," Hali said.
zeroed in on Express, Old Navy, Arden B, Gap, Aéropostale and New York
& Company as retailers that need to step up their merchandising
efforts in order to compete with these low-cost, fashion-forward