Sunday, 2 October 2011

Bucking the downhill trend! Ola Zara

In what some are describing as the toughest retail times they have seen there are some awesome success stories emerging such as Spanish retail giant ZARA and their foray into the Australian market.
ZARA has now successfully opened 2 flagship stores in Sydney and Melbourne with Adelaide due to open it’s doors in Mid November 2011.
Zara are not just doing well in Australia they are blitzing it with Sydney sitting in their number one sales spot globally since it opened and Melbourne in the top 5 since it opened. It seems that whilst some retailers are harping on about slow sales and low consumer confidence ZARA are proving that customer’s are spending they just wanted something new from their shopping experience.
Zara have got the most up to date stores and such a varied collection that it seems to be catering for just what shoppers were after. Perhaps if others put more energy into developing new initiatives to invigorate the customer experience and less time banging on about the economy they too could be sharing some of Zara’s well deserved consumer moula.
What is the secret to ZARA’s success many ask and well if we could answer that it wouldn’t be a secret now would it but surely there are some very obvious reasons such as easily accessible stores, clutter free layouts as well as a range many can’t compete with. Possibly the companies greatest strength though is something they took from Toyota yes that’s right cars:
Zara is a vertically integrated retailer. Unlike similar apparel retailers, Zara controls most of the steps on the supply-chain, designing, manufacturing, and distributing its products Zara set up its own factory in La Coruña (a city known for its textile industry) in 1980, and upgraded to reverse milk-run-type production and distribution facilities in 1990. This approach, designed by Toyota Motor Corp., was called the just-in-time (JIT) system. It enabled the company to establish a business model that allows self-containment throughout the stages of materials, manufacture, product completion and distribution to stores worldwide within just a few days.
 Zara is a global powerhouse now with 1557 stores in 73 countries around the world! Just goes to show give the consumer a unique shopping experience, get your back end right to ensure you can deliver and you are recession proof! Well done ZARA you’re my hero!

- John Caldwell