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Full text issue week 14-2015

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ISSN 1994-2419

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Issue Week 14-2015

 

Summary of news published in Week 13-2014

 

jpa4Sibil220OVER 30 years ago, when preparing a presentation for a marketing symposium, we expressed the principle: “For what the consumer needs, she will pay as little as possible but for what she wants, she will pay as much as she can afford”. That remains as evident today as it was then, and the problem remains the same: how to determine what the consumer wants. Often, consumer wants are determined by fashion trends, but by the time a given feature becomes a trend, all manufacturers and retailers will be offering the merchandise and it is no longer possible to apply a premium price. Retailers, whether chains or independents, are best placed to identify unsatisfied wants, by analysing reasons for lost sales. While some specialist chains with private labels have formalized the analysis of lost sales, few independents do so effectively, and fewer still keep their suppliers informed. Much remains to be done, by retailers as well as by manufacturers, to improve communication of lost sales data that helps to identify unsatisfied consumer wants.

 

Jean-Pierre Adeline

 

ANNOUNCEMENT 

Because many countries will be celebrating the Easter holiday

with a long weekend spanning Friday to Monday,

the next issue of the SIBILintimate newsletter will be published on 

Monday 13 April 

but updates of bodywear business news will continue to appear in the Recent Posts section of the sibilintimate.com website

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BACKGROUND – developments to bear in mind

 

ADVERTISING: plus size models found to boost sales

COLOURS: Italian service presents update

GERMANY: business climate shows improvement

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SUPPLIERS – information from the upstream sector

 

INVISTA: elastane bio-fibre nominated for award

LENZING: operating results exceed expectations

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THE APPAREL SCENE – news of brands and labels

 

PASSIONATA: new ranges target niche segment

TRIUMPH: two production units to be closed

ASHAPURA: investments promise to speed growth

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DISTRIBUTION: evolution of chains and channels

 

HUNKEMOELLER: private equity owner mulls options

MANGO: plus size swimwear range being launched

PRETTYSECRETS: Indian e-commerce to expand

VICTORIA’S SECRET: first stores in Italy to open soon

CALZEDONIA: export sales to rise yet further

LA VIE EN ROSE: failed swimwear chain acquired

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PEOPLE: corporate personalities

 

STEFAN DOBOCZKY: to take helm of Lenzing

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EXHIBITIONS – what to see and where to trade

 

EUROVET: layout of Paris salons to be modified

MILANO UNICA: attendance stable at China event

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FINISHING TOUCH – the smile for this week

 

SING THONG: karaoke with a difference

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BACKGROUND – developments to bear in mind

 

ADVERTISING: plus size models found to boost sales

 

COMPARATIVE tests of TV spots made by US online lingerie distributor Adore Me are said to have shown that advertisements featuring a plus size brunette model sold four times as much merchandise as commercials featuring a group of slim blonde models. The tests also showed that consumers preferred images that had not been retouched and that, in terms of costs:benefits, single models were more effective than groups. In late 2014, Adore Me had announced that its tests had shown that commercials featuring brunette models had proved more effective than those featuring blondes.

 

Adore Me

Adore Me

Because the US population includes a higher proportion of Afro-American and Hispanic consumers, who are less likely to be blonde, than is found in the EU, similar tests in Europe could produce different results, although plus size models of whatever hair colouring are likely to prove equally popular.

 

COLOURS: Italian service presents update

 

AN UPDATE of colour trends for A/W 2016/17 identified by Italian service Color Coloris was presented in Milan on March 11. Now incorporating input from different professional sources, the colour predictions for the season confirm the importance of the Gentlymade pastel palette and other themes presented late in 2014. The update also marks the emergence of a variety of neutral shades that constitute a new theme named Ghost.

 

Color Coloris

Color Coloris

While the colour predictions are intended for a broad range of colour-sensitive products, they are likely to influence also the evolution of shade preferences for bodywear items.

 

GERMANY: business climate improves again

 

FROM 106.8 points in February, the Ifo Business Climate Index for German Trade and Industry rose to 107.9 points in March, its highest level since July 2014. Manufacturers expressed greater satisfaction with their current business situation and wholesalers were also more positive. After having dipped in February, the confidence of retailers rose again in March. Only the construction industry failed to share the optimism of other sectors.

 

Naturana

Naturana

At present activity in the building trade remains high but is known to be weakening. Because the industry employs a large labour force, a significant downturn would raise unemployment and subsequently undermine consumption.

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SUPPLIERS – information from the upstream sector

 

INVISTA: elastane bio-fibre nominated for award

 

THE WORLD’S first bio-sourced elastane fibre, marketed by Invista as Lycra T162R, is one of six innovations nominated for the Nova Institute bio-sourced products award. The fibre that was launched in the spring of 2014 consists of 70 per cent, by weight, renewable dextrose produced from corn, which reduces CO2 emissions and related environmental impact. Award winners will be announced during the 8th International Conference on Bio-based Materials that will take place in Cologne from 13 to 15 April. Fabrics incorporating the new bio-based elastane are currently in development by many European knitters and will be included in some 2016 fabric collection. Click here to access full text of the Invista announcement.

 

Lycra bio-elastane

Lycra bio-elastane

When blended with recycled nylon, the bio-based elastane will make an important contribution to the environmental efforts of the bodywear sector.

 

LENZING: operating results exceed expectations

 

LEADING producer of cellulosic fibres Lenzing revealed 2014 results that again showed record sales by volume against a backdrop of declining fibre prices. Shipments of fibre rose by 8 per cent to reach 0.96m tons and operating results were improved substantially thanks to the implementation and intensification of the excelLENZ programme. While declining fibre prices and the sale of a subsidiary in 2013 had caused consolidated sales to dip by 2.3 per cent to EUR 1.86bn, operating results improved significantly as EBITDA rose by 24 per cent year-on-year to EUR 240.3m. Click here to access a more detailed review of the group’s 2014 performance.

 

Lenzing AG

Lenzing AG

As its sales effort focuses ever more closely on higher added value fibres, such as Tencel and Modal, the group will become less vulnerable to fluctuations in the price of conventional viscose fibres.

 

 THE APPAREL SCENE – news of brands and labels

 

PASSIONATA: new ranges target niche segment

 

THE LARGE cup with small back band market segment, which began to be exploited earlier this year by British start-up Bosom Galore, is now being targeted by Passionata. The French brand has launched five new Sexy ranges with 30 back and cups up to FF. These feature five essential bra styles: plunge, plunge T-shirt, half cup, push-up and strapless. The ranges are said to combine support, sexiness and fun suitable for everyday wear.

 

Passionata

Passionata

Now that the niche market has been identified by two brands in two countries, other labels elsewhere are sure to follow.

 

TRIUMPH: two production units to be closed

 

OPTIMIZATION of the supply chain, rising production costs and increasingly difficult international trading conditions were cited by Triumph International as the reasons for two plant closures announced this week. The multinational brand said that it is to close a facility in Hungary that employs 412 people and a sewing unit in Austria with a workforce of 210. The group reaffirmed its intention to retain production in its own plants of complex, innovative and strategically significant products and confirmed that production of its Sloggi panties would remain in the Wiener Neustadt facility despite relatively high labour costs.

Triumph

Triumph

 

Over the past few decades, a number of national labels have won a substantial market share in their respective countries, often while developing their export sales. This evolution has created keener competition for long-established international brands.

 

ASHAPURA: investments promise to speed growth

 

LISTED Indian manufacturer of lingerie and loungewear Ashapura Intimate Fashion plans to invest the equivalent of USD 4.3m on the setting up of a 23’000m2 integrated production unit in the state of Gujarat. The plant is expected to be operational in 2016. The company is also planning to open some 200 retail stores across India during the next two years and is preparing to open its first online store. It values the Indian innerwear market at USD 2.8bn and predicts that it will grow by 13 per cent a year to reach a value of USD 9.54bn by 2023.

 

Ashapura Intimate Fashion

Ashapura Intimate Fashion

The predicted growth promises considerable opportunities for expansion by innerwear brands in India.

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DISTRIBUTION – evolution of chains and channels

 

HUNKEMOELLER: private equity owner mulls options

 

PRIVATE equity concern PAI, which owns major European lingerie chain Hunkemöller is reported by news agency Reuters to be considering a sale or a stock exchange listing. PAI refused to comment on a report that a sale could be the preferred exit solution for the chain that is estimated to be worth EUR 500m. Meanwhile, Hunkemöller prepares to open a flagship store in Stuttgart as part of its planned expansion in Germany. The 420m2 site located on important shopping street Königstrasse was formerly occupied by a Mango fashion store and is now being fitted out by Hunkemöller to open on 2 April 2015.

 

Hunkemöller

Hunkemöller

Already well established in Germany, the chain is now strengthening its presence there with the opening of flagship stores in major cities.

 

MANGO: plus size swimwear range being launched

 

TO COMPLEMENT the plus size outerwear range launched in January 2014 under the Violeta by Mango label, Mango has introduced its first swimwear collection in larger sizes. The range consists of 15 one-piece and two-piece styles and also features co-ordinated cover-ups and beach accessories. It is being offered in selected stores as well as online at EUR 60 for a two-piece and EUR 70 for a one-piece suit.

 

Mango

Mango

The plus size range also complements the standard size collections of swimwear and intimate apparel that were added to the assortment in 2013.

 

PRETTYSECRETS: Indian e-commerce to expand

 

PRIVATE label e-commerce PrettySecrets is said to be preparing to finalize a B funding round of the equivalent to USD 15,25m that will allows it to strengthen its supply chain, introduce new categories and expand internationally. As regards expansion, an agreement with Souq.com in the UAE is expected to allow the Indian brand to enter the Saudi Arabian and Egyptian markets in the coming four months, with further expansion in seven other ME markets before the end of 2015. Founder Karan Behal told the local press that the label now has a 15 per cent share of the Indian online lingerie market after having grown its sales 20-fold in the past two years.

 

PrettySecrets

PrettySecrets

If the label can maintain its sales growth and continues to expand in other countries, it could develop into a major international brand.

 

VICTORIA’S SECRET: first stores in Italy to open soon

 

FOLLOWING the appointment by L Brands of Italian distribution specialist Percassi as franchiser for its Victoria’s Secret stores, the lingerie brand’s first stores in Italy are to open in 2015. In addition to intimate apparel, the stores will also propose perfumes, body care products, leather goods, travel goods and business accessories. Founded in 1976, Percassi manages several of its own brands as well as the development in Italy of a number of major international brands such as those of Inditex, Swatch and PVH among others. The group has also collaborated in the international development of Benetton and is active in the commercial property market.

Victoria's Secret

Victoria’s Secret

 

The track record of Percassi promises rapid growth of the US lingerie chain in Italy.

 

CALZEDONIA: export sales to rise yet further

 

HOSIERY and bodywear giant Calzedonia told Italian business newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore that almost all the 300 new stores it plans to open in 2015 will be outside Italy. The new openings will include 30 Intimissimi Uomo stores. The group, which declared 2014 consolidated sales up by 11 per cent, to EUR 1.85bn, said that sales of the Calzedonia brand had advanced by EUR 50m to EUR 598m, that Intimissimi sales had reached EUR 586m (+EUR 64m) and that Tezenis sales rose by EUR 30m to EUR 474m. Sales of the Falconeri outerwear brand rose fastest, however, by 85 per cent to EUR 37m. It was also announced that the Atelier Aimée luxury bridal wear chain would be relaunched in 2015 with new store openings and a more affordable offer starting at EUR 1’500.

 

Calzedonia

Calzedonia

The relaunch of the bridal wear chain will provide new opportunities for selling bridal lingerie.  

 

LA VIE EN ROSE: failed swimwear chain acquired

 

A LEADING Canadian lingerie chain, La vie en Rose, is to acquired the failed swimwear chain Bikini Village, which is also based in Montreal. The purchase price of less than CAD 4m for the swimwear chain that has debts of CAD 6m was said to be justified by the value of its prime store locations in many cities. The Bikini Village brand and network is to be maintained except for four stores in Quebec but the Montreal head office is to be closed. Some personnel reduction is to be expected but most of the employees will be retained. La Vie en Rose CEO François Roberge said there would be no major changes until next autumn but hinted at plans for expansion as he said that he saw good potential openings in the west. La Vie en Rose operates 180 stores in Canada and 90 stores in 17 other countries.  

 

La Vie en Rose

La Vie en Rose

       

The international presence of La Vie en Rose suggests that Bikini Village might also start expanding outside Canada once the business has been turned around.

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PEOPLE – corporate personalities

 

STEFAN DOBOCZKY: to take helm of Lenzing

 

THE LEADING world producer of cellulosic fibres, Lenzing AG, announced the appointment of Stefan Doboczky to the post of CEO as from 1 June 2015. He takes over from Peter Untersperger who will step down prematurely at his own request on 31 May. Click here for full details of the announcement.

Stefan Doboczky

Stefan Doboczky

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EXHIBITIONS – what to see and where to trade

 

EUROVET: layout of Paris salons to be modified

 

LEADING organiser of bodywear and related salons Eurovet announced major modifications to be made to the layout of the next editions of the Mode City and Interfilière salons in Paris from 4 to 6 July 2015. Both salons will remain in Hall 1 of the Porte de Versailles exhibition complex but will no longer be placed side by side. Instead, they will be separated horizontally, obliging Interfilière visitors to traverse the lingerie, swimwear and hosiery salon to reach their objective. There will also be a single entry for the two events and pre-registered visitors will enter via an elevated footbridge that provides a panoramic view of the stands. The height of stand walls will also be limited to 1.5 metres to improve visibility.

 

Paris salons layout

Paris salons layout

It will be interesting to see whether the revised layout achieves its objective of boosting attendance at the two events.

 

MILANO UNICA: attendance stable at China event

 

STAGED within the Intertextile salon in Shanghai, which gathered a total of 1’104 exhibitors and attracted 3500 visitors, the Milano Unica China fashion fabric salon reported an attendance that was stable in comparison with the year-earlier event. Exhibitors reported a modest revival in demand for woollen fabrics, largely thanks to the growth of the corporate apparel sector in China.

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While the event is of little direct interest for suppliers of bodywear fabrics, the contribution of the salon to the prestige of the Italian textile industry could well add to their competitive strength in the future.

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FINISHING TOUCH – the smile for this week

 

SING THONG: karaoke with a difference

 

CLAIMED to be a world first, an underwear karaoke competition was staged earlier this month in Los Angeles. The organizers said the Lingerie Karaoke is an experience unlike any other and added that a cloakroom facility was available for competitors.

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Lingerie karaoke (photo Reuters)

 

Compared to lingerie football, lingerie karaoke enjoys a significant advantage: it takes place indoors where it’s warmer.

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