Internationalisation of the Spanish Fashion Brand Zara

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The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at CASE STUDY Internationalisation of the Spanish fashion brand Zara Carmen Lopez and Ying Fan Brunel Business School, Uxbridge, UK Abstract Purpose – Research on the internationalisation of retailing has been mainly focused on market entry issues. This paper attempts to examine the internationalisation process from an international marketing perspective using Spanish fashion retailer Zara as a case study. Design/methodology/approach – An in-depth case approach was adopted based on extensive secondary research, which includes literature published in English and Spanish as well as internal company documents. Findings – The…show more content…
The Zara concept Zara’s aim, according to Amancio Ortega, founder of Inditex, is to democratise fashion by offering the latest fashion in medium quality at affordable prices. What differentiates Zara’s business model from that of its competitors is the turnaround time, and the store as a source of information. Zara’s vertical integration of design, just-in-time manufacturing, delivery and sales, flexible structure, low inventory rule, quick response policy and advanced information technology enable a quick response to customer’s changing demands (Castellano, 1993, 2002). A completely new piece of clothing can be designed, manufactured and delivered in less than four weeks. Changes of an existing garment can be put on display within two weeks, much faster than the competition (The Economist, 2005). Zara internally manufactures its “live collections”, the most receptive garments to fashion, which account for almost half of its production, and outsources those that are not subject to seasonal variation. About 11,000 new items are launched every year (Ghemawat and Nueno, 2003). The store acts not only as a point of sale but also influences the design and speed of production. It is the end and starting point of the business system. Zara’s production cycle
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