Today, we put the spotlight on Zara's growth strategy, the ongoing crisis at Lanvin and the love of Chinese millennial tourists for Dior, Prada and Gucci. Enjoy the read and feel free to share! Have a great day, Ulrike


Zara forges ahead. To secure its lead over rivals like H&M, tech-savvy fast-fashion retailer Inditex SA plans to expand (paywall) its eCommerce to new markets like India and implement its RFID inventory management technology in all of its 7.385 stores. Inditex owns eight fast-fashion chains including Zara, Massimo Dutti and Berksha. Q1 revenue advanced 14% as net profit jumped 18%.


Rising risk. Money Magazine has expanded the list of US retailers at risk for bankruptcy to 22 names. In addition to the usual suspects including Sears, J. Crew and Claire’s, the magazine has added names like luxury retailer Neiman Marcus, socially conscious footwear brand TOMS Shoes, and aspiring luxury brand Vince.

Karstadt's new Hood. German department store chain Karstadt and its parent company Signa Retail have bought (in German) a 70% stake in Hood.de. The online marketplace offers more than 5 million items including apparel and serves about 7 million customers. Hood.de will be integrated (paywall) into Karstadt and Signa Retail’s newly created joint-venture, Karstadt Marktplatz GmbH (in German), which will pursue more partnerships and acquisitions.


Lanvin in crisis. Since it fired former Artistic Director Alber Elbaz in October 2015, France’s oldest fashion brand has been in crisis. Elbaz’ replacement, Bouchra Jarrar, was not able to make an impact with her women’s collections. In 2016 sales at Lanvin dropped 23% to €162 million while losses mounted to more than €18 million. In 2017 the trend continues with a 32% decrease in sales.

Expanding the footprint. Lauma International has acquired German lingerie maker Felina from Luxemburg-based private equity company Palero for an undisclosed sum. Felina’s management team is now being lead (in German) by Lauma Inernational’s new CEO, Peter Parma, who moved to the Latvian textile company from Russian department store Tsum and also worked (in Swedish) for Ikea in Russia. Former CEO Daniel Tikal will leave the company.


Dying for Dior. When shopping abroad, Chinese millennials prefer European fashion brands Dior, Prada, Gucci, Hermès and Chanel. According to a new survey on WeChat by China i2i Group, these 18 to 39 year-olds make up about half of the total number of international shoppers from China. Their next most favored brands are Burberry, Boss and Tiffany.


From rainboots to luxe fashion... German fashion house Escada has hired the current Design Director of Hunter Boots, Niall Sloan, as Global Design Director. Sloan leaves Hunter on June 17, planning to start at Escada on August 1st. Sloan, who formerly worked as Head of Women's at Burberry's high-end Prorsum line, is going to report to Escada CEO Iris Epple-Righi.

...and back. While Niall Sloane's replacement at Hunter should be announced shortly, Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) Wendy Svarre will also leave the company. Her duties as Head of the US business go to Sallie Scripter, who recently joined from LVMH as Executive Vice President Americas. CEO Vincent Wauters will take over Svarre's CCO responsibilities. In addition, Tracy Solomons, former Director of Customer Experience at Uniqlo, has been assigned the newly created position of Customer Engagement Director.


The Blonde Gommino. Italian leather brand Tod’s has teamed up with power blogger Chiara Ferragni of The Blonde Salad to put her own stamp on Tod’s Gommino bag and Double T Gommino shoe. The #chiaralovestods (video) capsule collection will drop in July at Tod’s stores around the world and the Tods.com online shop.


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