1 Overview of Fashion Brand Internationalization: Theories and Trends 1
Byoungho Jin and Elena Cedrola
2 Ermenegildo Zegna: When Family Values Guide Global Expansion in the Luxury Industry 31
Elena Cedrola and Ksenia Silchenko
3 Diesel: An Unconventional, Innovative, International- Lifestyle, Italian Company 65
Donata Vianelli , Giovanna Pegan , and Manuela Valta
4 The Internationalization Trajectory of Bossini: A Fashion Retailing Enterprise from Hong Kong 89
Hau-Ling Chan , Tsan-Ming Choi , and Ka-Yan Man
5 Beaucre Merchandising Co. Ltd: A Successfully Internationalizing Korean Apparel Company 115
Byoungho Jin and Jae-Eun Chung
Internationalization is critical for any business, and especially so for globalby- nature fashion brands. Of the many industry sectors, fashion is probably one of the most active in terms of internationalization. Compared with other industry sectors, it is generally easier for fashion brands to enter international markets because little fi nancial investment is required, smallscale retail space is possible, and economies of scale can be maximized. Moreover, the dynamic global market, widespread supplier networks and supply chains strengthen the fashion industry’s advantage in internationalization. As a result, there are more successful internationalization cases in the fashion industry than in any other sector.
A majority of global fashion brands operate beyond their home countries and a significant number of these brands make more than half of their revenues from international operations. For example, revenues from international operation are as high as 95 % for H&M, 80 % for Inditex, S.A., and 68 % for Nike. Leading luxury fashion group LVMH earns 88 % of its retail sales from 76 different countries.
Despite the unprecedented scale of fashion brands’ internationalization in recent decades, not much is known about its specifi c features. The global fashion industry is intrinsically complex and cooperative, so analysis of its multiple layers provides profound insights into the industry and its management. Case study analysis also helps answer questions about what is happening, why and how. Nonetheless, case studies are a rarity within the literature. This book presents a collection of case studies of fashion companies of various sizes and cultural backgrounds. Each case is written by author(s) from the brand’s country of origin and based on original documents and interviews with key informants, some of which have previously been unavailable in English. These case studies therefore provide a higher level of detailed and accurate information and practical insights into the industry’s competitive landscape and its future.
The book is a useful read for undergraduate as well as graduate students with an interest in the fashion industry, retailing, branding and international business. It will be an excellent resource for scholars researching fashion brand internationalization thanks to its review of the literature and its insights into fashion brands’ internationalization strategies. Professionals in the fashion and apparel industry will also fi nd it worth reading because globalization issues are critical to their business survival.
This volume consists of fi ve chapters combining theory with practice. The first chapter reviews the characteristics of the fashion industry and its products, traditional internationalization models and entry mode choices, and the main differences between manufacturing internationalization and retailing internationalization. Major emerging trends in fashion brand internationalization are then examined, including the increase in Asian apparel brand internationalization, the rise of international out-shopping both online and offl ine, the acquisition of leading global fashion brands by companies from developing countries, and China’s infl uence on the expansion of fashion brands. An understanding of these trends will provide global fashion brand companies with insights as to the challenges and opportunities presented by these new shifts.
The book discusses four global fashion brand cases that are carefully selected to refl ect the diverse aspects and trends of their internationalization endeavors. The fi rst case (Chap. 2 ) demonstrates how Zegna, a fourthgeneration family-owned Italian business, evolved from a producer of high-quality fabrics into a global luxury fashion brand. It emphasizes the importance of local community and family values in brands’ international outlook. Despite the delocalization of some production plants from Italy to Switzerland, Spain, Turkey and Mexico, the company demonstrates how strong brand reputation and company values together with cohesive vertical integration choices can sustain business growth both locally and globally. Case two (Chap. 3 ), Diesel, is a relatively small and more recently established Italian company targeting younger consumers. The founder succeeded in reinventing denim fabric in a mature market characterized by fi erce competition and the leading presence of American multinationals. Innovation, creativity and non-conformist choices are the fundamentals of the company. The Diesel case also demonstrates how the company achieved sustained growth in both national and international markets by repositioning a mature product from medium to high quality and from medium to high price.
Cases three and four illustrate two Asian brands: Bossini from Hong Kong (Chap. 4 ) and Beaucre Merchandising from South Korea (Chap. 5 ). These two cases, unlike Italian Zegna and Diesel, are rather small and target mid-to-high-priced markets, providing unique knowledge and insights into the contemporary fashion business. Internationalization is a relatively new phenomenon for Asian brands, and there were fewer examples for Bossini and Beaucre Merchandising to rely on. Moreover, without a strong brand or country image the two brands encountered more challenges despite expanding into psychically close neighboring Asian countries fi rst. For instance, Korean Beaucre Merchandising entered the Chinese market at a very early stage, enjoyed fi rst-mover advantage, but had to fi nd creative solutions to a number of challenges. The two Asian cases prove that fashion brands with less powerful brand and country images can still fi nd ways to compete in the global marketplace. Rome was not built in a day, nor is a global fashion brand. The four global fashion brand cases in this volume are thus put together in the hope that their examples and internationalization stories will inspire more fashion brands to success in global marketplaces. Our fi rst and deepest gratitude goes to two chairmen, Paolo Zegna at Zegna group and Man Joong Lee at Beaucre Merchandising, who took time from their busy schedules to share their stories and unique experiences with us and to review earlier drafts. Their insights and vision will inspire business executives to come. Special thanks go to authors of each chapter for providing insightful cases incorporating information and sources not readily available to many readers. The information is of particular value since their observation of the history of each brand in their home country and their own experiences as consumers are embedded in their analyses. We were fortunate to be supported by many former and current research assistants. Particular thanks are due to Hee Soon Yang, Junghwa Son, Hongjoo Woo, Hisu-Chun (Wendy) Chou and Naeun (Lauren) Kim for fi nding information for the books and designing and revising many fi gures and tables. We also thank Lavinia Caini and Letizia Trabaldo Togna for fi nding information and supporting bibliometric analysis.