5 Things You May Have Missed This Week
1. What Trump’s Win Means for the Luxury Industry in China
After Donald Trump was elected president of the United States last night, global stock markets went on a roller coaster ride and are expected to remain volatile for the foreseeable future. For luxury companies in particular, a big part of how they fare will come down to whether or not Trump follows through on his vows to take a protectionist stance on trade with China.
Trump’s victory “appears to be a clear negative for luxury goods stocks,” wrote Exane BNP Paribas Managing Director of Global Luxury Goods Luca Solca in an investor note on the election’s impact on luxury, saying that its effects on emerging market economies such as China would play an outsize role in brands’ stock price fluctuations. The reason outlined is pretty clear—Trump’s stated plan to impose a 45 percent tariff on imports from China would dent China’s growth, prompting “higher financial and economic tensions,” and as a result, lower consumer confidence and luxury demand in China, one of the world’s most important luxury markets.
Read the full story here
2. Could Reinvention Solve Our Shopping Addiction?
Swedish retail giant H&M seems an unlikely poster child for ecological living.
The High Street group, which owns brands including Monki and Cos and has more than 4,000 shops across the world, is one of the best known proponents of fast fashion.
It's a cheap and reliable source of trendy clothes which can be discarded as soon as another trend comes in.
Yet it has pledged to become "100% circular", ultimately using only recycled or other sustainable materials to make its clothes.
It's a journey that more fashion firms are beginning to take, with the so-called "circular economy" - which eliminates waste by turning it into something valuable - being seen as a possible solution to the vast amount of clothes that end up in landfill.
Last year, a fifth of the material H&M used was sustainably sourced, and it has gathered 32,000 tonnes worth of old clothing in the collection bins it has had in all its stores since 2013. The move was aimed at keeping the garments out of landfill, where three-fifths of clothing ends up.
H&M's sustainably sourced material makes up the equivalent of 100 million t-shirts - yet that is still a mere fraction of the £18bn worth of clothes it sold last year.
Read the full story here
3. Exploring European Consumer Views On Connected Technology At Retail
While interest and uptake in connected technology in retail is growing – from wearables to smart fitting rooms – levels of consumer usage and acceptance fluctuate from country to country across Europe, according to Retail Week’s latest report.
It compiled research from seven territories, including Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the UK, as per the infographic here.
Titled The European Connected Consumer, and written in association with Osborne Clark, the study outlines the fact European consumers should not be targeted as one homogenous group by retailers. Understanding behavioural nuances presents great opportunities to businesses whether interacting with consumers in retail, digital health, transport, logistics or emerging innovations, it explains.
“By discovering the game-changing shifts in European consumer behaviour we believe your business will be better equipped to navigate the digital revolution and drive future innovations,” writes Laura Heywood, commercial editor of Retail Week Connect.
As an integral part of the consumer’s need to be constantly ‘on’, there’s a growing appetite for connected wearables, for instance. Fitness trackers take the lead, with Italy, the world’s second healthiest country according to Bloomberg, showing the highest take-up (48%), followed closely by Spain (47%) and Germany (36%). Moving forward, trackable devices will need to seamlessly blend into busy lifestyles, as demonstrated by Levi’s’ and Google’s Project Jacquard jacket, it outlines.
The UK meanwhile shows the lowest adoption of fitness tracking and virtual health technologies – 68% use neither, compared with 59% across Europe. The report indicates this could be a result of public concerns following recent high profile data breaches, such as TalkTalk’s cyber attack in October.
One of the areas to have shown the biggest improvement and uptake is payment and shopping technologies, exemplified by the rise of contactless cards. These have been widely adopted across Europe, with 45% of respondents having used them in the past three months. Spain has the highest usage at 57% and Italy the lowest at just 26%.
Alternatively, only a minority of consumers in the UK (33%) and the Netherlands (40%) use mobile payments apps like Apple Pay. This may soon change as big retailers such as Tesco in the UK and Inditex in Spain, which owns Zara and Pull & Bear among others, launch their own mobile payment apps in the near future.
See the infographic and read the full story here
4. What President Trump Means for Retailers
After a long election night that defied many pollsters' predictions, Donald J. Trump is set to become the next president of the United States, beating out Democratic rival Hillary Clinton by razor-thin margins in key battleground states.
The specifics of what this election means for the retail industry will become clearer once Trump and his team produce a budget and lay out their policy agenda. But regardless of the winner, American consumers signaled they aren't happy with the current political climate, with both Trump and Clinton facing historic levels of unfavorability. And that’s not just a problem for Trump, but for retailers, too.
Read the full story here
5. FashTech Talks: Digital Customer Journey
For the third in a series of talks at Shoreditch House, FashTech Talks: Digital Customer Journey on Thursday, November 24th at 7pm.
In an age where consumer power is stronger than ever, FashTech brings together a panel discussion with some of the most dynamic leaders in e-commerce discussing the customer today. How do they want to interact with brands and retailers? What is the new normal? How can we use insight to create authentic brand experiences?
This is a Soho House Members event and booking is available on House Seven.
Book now on House Seven HERE