Retail Detail. Fast Fashion Stores Outperform Department Stores Across the Board.

August 26, 2009 • Shopping

A Uniqlo store in Tokyo

A new study conducted by The Sage Group LLC’s Apparel and Retail Group has proven that fast-fashion retailers have outpaced and outsold most department stores in the past 12 months. The group surveyed 47 retailers, all of which were publicly held and most of which were based in the U.S. The five stores that held the highest margin of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization as a percentage of sales, or EBITDA, were all affordable retail operators that offered of the moment fashion trends. They were Hennes & Mauritz, at 23.4 percent; The Buckle Inc., at 22.5 percent;
Zara operator Industria de Diseno Textil SA (Inditex), at 20.3 percent;
Urban Outfitters Inc., at 19.8 percent, and Fast Retailing Co. Ltd.,
owners of Uniqlo, at 18.6 percent. Gymboree, Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc., Aéropostale Inc., Gap Inc. and American Eagle Outfitters Inc. rounded out the top ten with EBITDA marks between 18 percent to 13.9 percent and it wasn't until the 11th spot on the list that Kohl's Corp. appeared as the first broadline retailer with a mark at 12.6 percent.

Other fast fashion retailers appeared on the list like Abercrombie & Fitch and Limited Brands Inc. before the first luxury department store, Nordstrom, came in 15th followed by Macy's with a 18th place spot. According to Sage's analysts, even the "fast fashion subset has achieved strong growth as well,” with the operations of Fast, Inditex and H&M outperforming most department stores, many of whose sales have declined over the past three years. Stock prices for he fast-fashion subset have gained 17.3 percent over the past year,
Sage noted. By comparison, the department stores cited in the study —
Macy’s, J.C. Penney Co. Inc., Nordstrom and Dillard’s — had seen their
stock prices decline 17.8 percent over the last year. These figures may be an indication of the trend that fashion has begun to follow—consumers purchasing fashionable but disposable items instead of investing in the quality of pricier pieces. Frederick Schmitt, managing director of Sage, was lead editor of the study.

Article and Photo Source: WWD
-Alia Rajput


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