Foreign brands challenge Vietnamese fashion firms

08:58 | 19/12/2017 Trade

(VEN) - In recent years, many foreign fast fashion brands have appeared in Vietnam, exciting domestic consumers and worrying domestic businesses.

foreign brands challenge vietnamese fashion firms
Long queue for opening of first H&M store in Hanoi

After its great success in Ho Chi Minh City, the Spanish clothing giant Zara set up shop in the northern capital of Hanoi. H&M and Mango have also established a presence in Vietnam, while Uniqlo and Forever 21 are conducting market research to prepare for entering the Vietnamese market.

Market research conducted by Savills Vietnam shows that with a high proportion of the population aged 20-30, consumers preferring foreign goods to domestic products, and an annual 20 percent fashion industry growth, Vietnam has become an attractive destination for foreign fast fashion brands. Pham Minh Huong, Managing Director of the Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group (VINATEX), said along with the rapid improvement of living standards, consumer demand has transformed rapidly from durable to highly-fashioned, short-lived products.

Not only foreign companies but also domestic enterprises have grasped this trend and placed more emphasis on product design and diversification. Domestic names including Ivy Moda, Eva de Eva, and Hera DG, among others, have carved out a major niche on the domestic market. However, domestic fashion brands seem still less attractive than foreign ones, as they lag behind in terms of design and promotion modes.

Foreign fast fashion manufacturers change their designs frequently, launching new products almost monthly. With reasonable prices, these collections are appealing to domestic consumers. The increasingly popular online shopping trend is also putting pressure on domestic manufacturers, as online business requires rapid, professional services.

An Italian designer, Giordano Solustri, said each fashion brand has its own strategy, including pricing strategy based on surveys of consumer tastes and incomes for different market segments. Domestic fashion firms should seriously research the market and properly invest in product design, he said. Besides, to make a difference, it is necessary to build a specific story for each product line, apply modern business methods, and diversify supply of materials in accordance with fast fashion specifications, he said.

The presence of the world’s popular fashion brands in Vietnam has put great competitive pressure on domestic businesses to change their production and trading methods, while diversifying choices for consumers.

Viet Nga