Tag Archives: levis

DESITA slogan

Facts & figures about Retail, Franchising and …

What’s a concept?

Retail design is a creative and commercial discipline that combines several different areas of expertise together in the design and construction of retail space. Retail design is primarily a specialized practice of architecture and interior design, however it also incorporates elements of interior decoration, industrial design, graphic design, ergonomics, and advertising. Read more

How big is Christmas for Retail?

Christmas is big, no doubt about it. How big depends on what type of retail. Highest honors for big holiday volume goes to sporting goods, electronics, and clothing, but general merchandise and non-store retailers (like Amazon) are close behind. Lower holiday season sales occur at car dealers, building materials stores and gas stations. Read more

MENA: Franchise scenario

The total population of MENA region is 320 Million – 60% > 25 years. Regions population growth rate is 3-5% per year. One of the highest worldwide. In the next 3 years 500.000+sqm of new Retail will enter the Dubai’s market. Read more

What a brand today?

Are you aware of this?

DESITA slogan

New Terms of Engagement for Levi Strauss & Co. Global Supply Chain

Yesterday, Levi Strauss & Co.  announced a new Terms of Engagement for its global supply chain, moving beyond compliance to help improve the lives of workers in factories around the world. Under the new approach, LS&Co. will require contract factories to help make employees’ lives better by supporting programs for their workers that align with UN Millennium Development goals.

In a speech delivered today at the CERES annual conference, CEO and President John Anderson said: “We are proposing a new apparel industry standard of social, economic, and environmental sustainability that focuses on improving workers’ lives. If our ultimate goal is to improve not just factory conditions, but to make a material difference to the people and communities in our supply chain, then we need a more holistic approach and a more human perspective.”

The speech comes twenty years after Levi Strauss & Co. announced a Terms of Engagement that set a new standard of compliance for vendor factories in the apparel industry. The TOE required manufacturing factories to follow health, safety and environmental standards set by Levi Strauss & Co. This standard – considered pioneering at the time – rapidly became the norm for most companies with a global supply chain.

Anderson argued that companies need to do more to create progress and move the industry forward: “Compliance has us focused on two things: a legalistic standard of “do no harm” and factory-level monitoring and reporting,” said Anderson. “While we’ve made progress in a number of areas over twenty years, the hard truth is that we haven’t made enough progress on improving the everyday lives of the people who make our products.”

A New Terms of Engagement
The company’s new approach will focus on programs that align with the UN Millennium Development Goals http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/ specifically: improving maternal and child health; combating HIV/AIDs, and other diseases; promoting gender equality and empowering women; eradicating extreme poverty and hunger; and ensuring environmental sustainability.

LS& Co. committed to a nine-month advisory process with NGOs, other brands, labor unions and suppliers around the world. At the end of the process, Levi Strauss & Co. will release a white paper for public comment and then will begin implementing the new terms of engagement with suppliers in May 2012.

The company argued that a new terms of engagement is not only the right thing to do, but is good for business: “We are sure that if companies focus not just on the minimum legal requirements, but on a broader vision of social, economic, and environmental sustainability, they will be rewarded,” said Anderson.

Levi Strauss & Co. is a participant in the CERES Investor Business Roundtable for a Sustainable Economy announced this morning. The company made the commitment as part of a keynote speech delivered at the 2011 CERES Conference. For more information about the Roundtable, visit: ceres.org.

For the full John Anderson speech and more background information, please visit:http://www.levistrauss.com/new-termsofengagement. (Source: CSRwire PR)

A Pop-up revival in retail marketing

Over the past 12 months, a growing number of brands has turned to pop-up activity to provide a burst of PR activity and another reason for consumers to interact with their brand – hopefully ensuring that the effect of these events are going to last even after the shutters come down. The last news about a pop-up store is related to Marni, the Italian fashion brand, located at the Ocean Centre in Hong Kong and featuring the whole Marni Edition.

The pop-up phenomenon dates back 2004, when fashion brand Comme des Garcons opened a guerrilla store in Berlin, followed by a long list of known brands, such as ony Ericksson, Levi’s, Breil, Uniqlo or the most recent ones of Apple, Nokia, and Adidas Originals.

The pop-up strategy allows brands to tap into new markets at low cost, as rents are cheap and the ‘concept store’ strategy creates a buzz without investing in advertising.

Even thought they are an excellent way to deliver a brand experience there is a question over their reach, as they engage only those consumers who actually visit. Jeremy Rucker, head of Hotel Retail, experiential agency RPM’s pop-up and retail division, says the growth of pop-up activity is partly in response to the levels of empty retail space on high streets. ‘With so many brands turning to online-only channels, pop-up activity helps bring excitement back to the high street,’ he adds.

The big question for brands is how to drive investment beyond the life span of the pop-up store and the PR generated at that time. ‘Data capture is fundamental, but creating engaging ways for the brand to interact with the consumer that can a develop a life of their own should be considered,’ says Owen Cato, creative director of retail agency Live & Breathe. ‘Extending activity in the pop-up store online and into social-media activity would work well.’

Claire Stokes, managing director of experiential agency The Circle Agency, adds: ‘Previously, when brands have talked about experiential, it has been all about being in the live space. Now it is about building new digital layers to ensure the halo effect of any given event stretches beyond just one single event.’ For example, when EA Games promoted its key Christmas video-game releases in shopping centres, it encouraged consumers to ‘check in’ to win titles. More than 3000 consumers took part, promoting the event far beyond the boundaries of the event venue.

However, industry experts warn against investing in digital at the expense of the core event. Trevor Hardy, founder of creative agency The Assembly, contends that pop-up activity should be viewed as another marketing channel. ‘The more sensory and multichannel the experience, the better it becomes,’ he adds. ‘The risk is that interactive and social media may dilute the experience – 100% of the efforts should be dedicated to ensuring the experience is the best it can be.’

However, the fact that even retail brands with a consistent high-street presence are turning to pop-up activity perhaps suggests that brands should be creating the excitement of a pop-up shop in their existing retail space every day. Hardy argues that this is not possible, as the ‘focus is on getting the maximum return per square foot’.

Caroline Wurfbain, client services director at experiential agency Jack Morton Worldwide, predicts that more brands will launch pop-up activity over the next 12 months. ‘The challenge is that if ideas don’t change, there is a risk that the market will become saturated and consumers will get bored,’ she adds.

Many of the most successful pop-up launches and events of recent years have not been the work of commercial brands, but independent chefs and artists. As a result, a raft of brands has attempted to mimic the halo effect of organic movements such as Hidden Kitchen, a private supper club that serves 16 people a seasonal 10-course tasting menu paired with wines. However, if these brands fail to offer consumers a compelling reason to interact with them, their experiential strategy risks being dangerously insubstantial (Source: Marketing Magazine)

Sustainable Apparel Coalition: what is it?

In the last days there has been a lot of buzz about the Sustainable Apparel coalition, officially launched on March 1st. But what is it?

The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), which includes* Nike, Gap Inc, H&M, Levi Strauss, Marks & Spencer, and Patagonia, will work to lead the apparel industry towards developing improved sustainability strategies and tools to measure and evaluate sustainability performance. 

The Coalition’s purpose at a higher level has two goals.  First, the member organizations will develop plans to soften the apparel industry’s impact on water and industry consumption, while making commitments to improved waste diversion and the reduction in the use of chemicals. To that end, the Coalition’s members will work with industry peers and supply chain partners to achieve the fullest possible life cycle transparency for clothing. Meanwhile, the SAC seeks to ensure that workplaces throughout the apparel industry adopt fair employment practices and a safe working environment, while eliminating any exposure to toxic chemicals.

Second, the Coalition will develop a metrics-based tool that will assist companies in the measurement of their environmental and social impacts.  For now described as the Version 1.0 Apparel Index, the tool works similarly to Nike’s Apparel Environmental Design Tool and the Outdoor Industry Association’s Eco Index.  Besides offering an assessment on companies’ usages of energy, water, and chemicals, the index will also evaluate products’ entire life cycles.  Companies will be able to measure their performance, compare them to their peers, and receive guidelines and resources for how they can improve their performance all such metrics.  The Apparel Index is slated to launch next month.(Source: Triplepundit Photo: Treehugger)
*Founding members of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition are based in North America, Asia, Europe and the U.K. They include Adidas, Arvind Mills, C&A, Duke University, Environmental Defense Fund, Esprit, Esquel, Gap Inc., H&M, HanesBrands, Intradeco, JC Penney, Kohl’s Department Stores, Lenzing, Levi Strauss & Co., LF USA, a division of Li & Fung Limited, Marks & Spencer, Mountain Equipment Coop, New Balance, Nike, Nordstrom, Otto Group, Outdoor Industry Association, Patagonia, Pentland Brands, REI, TAL Apparel, Target, Timberland, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Verité, VF Corp, and Walmart.

GoodGuide for Good Products for a more sustainable Retail

Yesterday I was reading a post concerning Levi Strauss & Co as the Top Jeans Brand, scoring a 7.4. The brand Prana was listed as the next highest, with a score of 6.3—followed by H&M (6.1), Banana Republic (6.1), and Old Navy (6.1).

I did not know what GoodGuide is – shame on me – so I checked out their very interesting website, which is said to be the world’s largest and most reliable source of information on the health, environmental and social impacts of consumer products. And I think it really is, rating over 95000 products, mainly available on the US market only: from food, toys, personal care to apparel, electronics and appliances. What is really striking is the scientific approach they have on their ratings, which are compiled from three sub-scores addressing Health, Environment and Society.

 Each of these sub-scores are based on an analysis of a set of indicators that GoodGuide has determined are the best-available measures of performance in these areas. Their methodology differs from the product belonging to different categories, each and every one having its own scoring methodology. Amazing. Let’s talk about apparel for example.

Quoting the Good Guide site: “Until (apparel) companies do a better job of providing transparency into their supply chain, our ability to accurately score brands based on their relative performance will be subject to significant uncertainties Environment scores are assigned to apparel brands by combining GoodGuide’s standard company indicators of environmental performance (weighted at 50%) with brand-level environmental indicators that address issues that are specific to the apparel sector (weighted at 50%).(….) Social scores are assigned to apparel brands by combining GoodGuide’s standard company indicators of social performance (50%) with brand-level social indicators that address issues that are specific to the apparel sector (weighted at 50%).(…) Health scores are not assigned to apparel brands because this product category does not generally pose health risks to consumers.”

The Good Guide website is also very good at using the Web 2.0 tools to “spread the word” and improve the accuracy of the product information thanks to a “support product info” page which enables visitors to add further details.

It would be also very interesting to test the effect of this kind of structured and scientific information directly at the point-of-sale, to see how the consumer react when discovering that his/her favourite brand of pasta is not that “good”. Because thanks to GoodGuide mobile App this is possible: consumers can scan the product, check the GoodGuide database and then purchase, or decide to choose another brand.

With this detailed level of “scientific” information, producers and retailers have nothing to hide and their achieving a high/low score can have a boomerang effect on brand reputation which must not be ignored and will not be ignored by consumers. Sustainability pays, and it will pay even more in the future.