How To Solve A Crisis

How To Solve A Crisis
How To Solve A Crisis

Video: How To Solve A Crisis

Video: How To Solve A Crisis
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There are two news in the clothing market - as usual, good and bad. Entering this market today can be significantly cheaper than before, but only companies that are rich not only financially, but also ideologically will be able to make money on it.

This spring, the Tashir development group owned by entrepreneur Samvel Karapetyan announced the launch of a new project - two multi-brand clothing store chains Modny Alliance and Fashion Alliance Jeans. Unlike the concept of its other network - shopping centers "Rio", "Tashir" does not intend to catch tenants in these networks - it will sell inexpensive clothes from different manufacturers here as an operator on its own. "In principle, we offered our partners different interaction schemes: sublease, collection buyout or commission. But as the first months showed, the commission mechanism turned out to be the most popular: the company gives us a collection for sale on the condition that we can make our own extra charge", - says the vice-president of "Tashir" Vitaly Efimkin. The developer's idea is clear: in addition to the four existing shopping malls, Tashir is completing ten new ones, and it is not clear how to fill them in under current conditions. “When we are able to replace a tenant, we have a stronger position,” explains Efimkin.

It would seem that neophytes with their own funds, or even retail space, should feel quite tolerable in the clothing market, especially in the middle and lower price segment. The demand here has not decreased as much as in the luxury segment, and the competition, perhaps, will not be as tough - due to the departure of weak players. “The price of entering the market has decreased significantly, especially in retail,” says Maria Smorchkova, head of the Association of Fashion Industry Enterprises (APRIM). two or more times cheaper, which, however, cannot be said about old shopping centers, especially in Moscow."

However, only companies armed with strong ideas will still be able to count on success in this cleared market.

Mode averaging

Research holding "Romir" found out that 61% of Russians have been saving on clothes since the beginning of the crisis. A more detailed picture of the reduction in demand is given by the market participants themselves. Paradoxical as it may seem, but, according to major players, sales in boutiques and clothing markets fell approximately equally, by 50-70%. This, of course, is a coincidence: if in the case of boutiques we are really talking about a global decline in demand in the upper price segment, then the clothing markets illustrate the situation not in the segment, but in the format of trade. "The crisis did not reverse progress, but spurred it on," says Andrey Kupriyanov, a member of the Glance board of directors. "There will be no return to wild trading, people, on the contrary, will strive to get more comfort and a better product for less money."

“Signs above the doors of stores may change, but there will be no return to the uncivilized trade and clothing markets of the 90s,” Anna Lebsak-Kleimans, CEO of Fashion Consulting Group, agrees. everything, he will only gain, not lose."

Thus, all market segments are gradually moving under the roof of the stores, including the mid-price (2-7 thousand rubles per item) and the mass market (up to 2 thousand rubles). According to the analytical agency Discovery Research Group (DRG), they account for the main share of the Russian clothing market - 85%.

The decline in sales in the middle and lower segments does not look as monstrous as in the luxury segment, even though, according to opinion polls, the number of people who only have enough money for food and not for clothes has grown from 22% in July 2008. to today's 31%. Low-priced apparel retailers claim that demand has dropped by an average of 30-35% and believe that former buyers of more expensive clothing brands keep them afloat.

"Sales fell for everyone, but not all the same, - says Maria Smorchkova. - Those who do not give in to discouragement, who have the means and make really interesting marketing moves, are less likely to lose than others."

Considering that DRG estimated the entire market at $ 40 billion in 2008 (and back in 2006, clothes were sold for $ 31 billion), there is still an opportunity to earn money. It's another matter that easy earnings in the market seem to be over: under the roofs of stores, not just things should be sold, but ideas and technologies.

Someone will have to leave

“The number of players in the clothing market will not change, but their composition will change greatly,” believes Anna Lebsak-Kleimans. “Such strong western brands as GAP and H&M are entering the market, and they will not be limited to a couple of stores in Moscow, but will enter St. Petersburg. and other major cities. Weak Russian players will obviously have to leave the market."

This is already happening: for example, just a year ago, the investment company Sminex, which manages the money of the former shareholder of Rosbuilding, Alexey Tulupov, closed the Fashion Season network created.

“In recent years, quite a few players have entered the clothing market in order to raise easy money and earn start-up capital for other, more marginal industries,” says Maria Smorchkova. “In an era when everything was growing and swollen, it was possible. But not now. Now is the time for idea campaigns."

Western players, of course, will seriously compete with the Russian ones, but the competition from hypermarkets may be even more serious. Manufacturing companies are beginning to notice that hypermarkets have recently generated a clear demand for cheap clothing collections. “Clearing the space, hypermarkets are already starting to move to the clothing market,” says Andrey Kupriyanov. “But they will become serious competitors for branded retail at the moment when they realize that instead of the traditional format of clothing dullness, they need to do real fashion retail at the best world patterns ".


Over the past five years, several dozen quite ideological companies have appeared in the middle segment of the market. Almost all of them were created without the participation of Western capital, the only exception is Melon Fashion Group, a company established in 2005 on the basis of the St. Petersburg garment factory "Pervomayskaya Zarya" with the participation of the Danish corporation Kurt Kellerman and the Swedish state investment fund Swedfund International.

Actually, the idea companies began to appear even earlier. The first was in 1998 Rostov GloriJeans, but its ideas have changed over the years. If at the time of its creation the company was mainly engaged in the production and wholesale of children's jeanswear, today, in the current global trend of total look, it already has a full range of clothing and accessories for children and adults, produces eight collections a year (according to another the ideological component of the global fashion industry - fast fashion) and sells them in 500 stores, own and franchised.

All the same principles on which modern mass market companies are built around the world - total look, fast fashion and their own or franchise sales network - are three pillars on which the majority of notable Russian players in the clothing market have built their ideology. Among them are Melon Fashion Group (brands Zarina, Befree, since last autumn the multi-brand Taxi network), BAON, Sela, Vassa, Glance, OGGI, clothing retailer Vesh! and some others. None of these companies is going to leave the market, and their ambitions range from "to survive" to "to survive and defeat everyone."

“With prompt adaptation to changes in the market and a competent analysis of the situation, our company can not only not lose, but also strengthen its positions,” says Mikhail Urzhumtsev, General Director of Melon Fashion Group. “The market will clear up, weak players will leave. the main trend in the commercial real estate market is obvious to us: in the existing shopping malls, retail spaces are being vacated, which, if all "parameters of success" were met, we could occupy. According to Urzhumtsev, the company plans to open 50 stores this year (it now operates 192 stores, of which only 57 are franchised), and is not abandoning those plans.

He is not shy about announcing the upcoming breakthrough of GloriJeans: the company plans to expand its chain from 500 stores to 600 and increase its turnover to 7 billion rubles. (in 2008, the turnover under IFRS amounted to 6.2 billion rubles).

But the Veshch chain, which opened 24 new stores last year, is correcting its announced plans for the future. It was planned to open 200 stores by 2011, but now we are talking about preserving the current 57.

“Actually, if some stores generate losses, we will close them, this is normal. During the crisis, of course, everything slows down, but the pace is no longer the main thing. The time of blitzkriegs has passed. The main thing is that now people have more verified strategies. ", - says Olga Eremeeva.

Everything is calm in China

“The current crisis is a crisis of accumulated inefficiency,” says Andrey Kupriyanov. “Therefore, the basic concept of survival for all players is practically the same: to maintain demand, at least some profitability of the business, to learn to live with low profitability. But the devil, as they say, is in detail: it is important who achieves this and how."

The most difficult thing for companies is to reduce the cost of production. The vast majority of Russian companies manufacture their clothes outside of Russia, mainly in China. And if the ruble exchange rate in a known way dipped against the dollar, then the yuan exchange rate has stood firmly at around 6.78 for years. "After the devaluation, even earlier, after China introduced laws aimed at improving the quality of life of citizens, the cost of producing clothes in the northern, most developed business territories increased by 200%, and in the south by about fifty," he said. "Money" is a large manufacturer who wished to remain incognito. - Now in China they work for five days for eight hours for the same money, for which they used to work seven days for 12-14 hours. And in addition, there is a law on compulsory insurance of workers and on vacations. The only thing,what could force Chinese factories to lower prices is the departure of American customers, which is really happening in droves. And still, there is no crisis in China, and so far they are holding prices with an iron fist."

As a result, companies such as GloriJeans, Vassa, Glance, which sew their collections mainly in Russia, have received some handicap in terms of cost reduction. Moreover, GloriJeans, whose production is located in the not-so-spoiled town of Shakhty in the Rostov region, initially learned to compete with China in terms of production price. And so successfully that in the fall of 2003 she received an order for sewing Levi's Signature jeans, which Levi Strauss & Co sells in Wal-Mart supermarkets only in the United States.

Other players began to think about the transfer of part of the production. “We have already given trial orders to several Russian factories, we want to see what they will offer us,” says the co-owner of Sel Arkady Pekarevsky.

This, however, is not an easy matter. Suffice it to recall the ambitious plans of Taimuraz Balloyev, the former head of the Baltika brewing company, who in 2005 bought the country's largest St. Petersburg factory, Fosp, in order to bring men's suit tailoring to the proper level. However, last year the production moved from the building on the Moika (the former "School named after Dostoevsky" - "Republic Shkid", by the way) to the "Trud" factory to continue sewing work clothes there. The Shkid Republic was destined to become a business center.

However, I did the same with the building of Pervomayskaya Zarya and Melon Fashion Group, there are offices on the site of sewing workshops, and Zarin and Befree are sewn in China. The owner of the Wild Orchid underwear retailer also dared to start production in Russia: in 2007 he converted a factory in the city of Gagarin, Smolensk Region, in order to sew Vendetta underwear in it, but it is difficult to judge the results of the experiment, now the company is trying its last bit avoid bankruptcy.

However, recently companies have learned to diversify production, although not in favor of Russia. They have learned to produce woolen products perfectly in Belarus, cotton products - in Uzbekistan.

Jabbering ideas

“You know, I’m so glad when I manage to find some mistake in the design of the store!” Says the co-owner of Sel Arkady Pekarevsky. “It’s bad when the store is running out of hand, but I don’t understand why. Money is in the end not so important now. We must learn to work in zero, this is nothing, the time is like that. The main thing is to use this time to come up with, to implement something new. This is the task, there are no others."

Sel comes up with something new every day: the company is famous for the fact that it constantly amuses itself and its customers with all sorts of inventions: it will force customers to draw sketches for T-shirts, then it will open platforms for the creativity of its own employees in stores, or a propaganda team will come to employees, on the contrary, to entertain them.

“It’s always more difficult, of course, not to invent, but to implement it qualitatively,” Pekarevsky worries. ".

There is some coquetry in these words: the company's own research shows that the share of loyal customers (constantly making purchases on the network) is more than 70%, which is a very good indicator.

One of the latest SelLight ideas is to reduce the cost of entering the market for new partners, the SelLight project. Within the framework of the project, franchisors are offered an economical option for opening stores - the cost of equipment and collection starts from 100 thousand rubles. Since the beginning of the year, Sel has opened 25 new stores, including in Yerevan and Minsk.

“We also plan to be a global company,” says Andrey Kupriyanov from Glance about the intimate. “Initially, we were guided by the fact that only 20% of the collection is basic, and the remaining 80% should be changed not even eight times a year, but every two. three weeks. Today, we intend to offer a product of even greater value: a professional stylist will work in each store, who will be able, if necessary, to completely shape the individual customer's wardrobe."

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