Chinese fashion giant Bosideng sets up shop in London – and it’s not just ‘testing the water’ ….
This article appeared in HK FashionMag.com, August 1, 2012.
The size of the investment, together with investing in ‘bricks ‘n’ mortar (in a top, top London address) would appear to go against the tide.
But surely the most important piece of news, included in the article (below), is the company’s decision to have a local high-end men’s range label manufactured in Europe and, according to the report, only 10% made in China.
Is this the start of a trend with the ‘emerging’ markets’ outsourcing to the old economies of Aurope and the US. Probably not. It’s’ well worth keeping an eye on though. It’s sad to note that as western economies fall on hard times, unemployment rockets skywards and labour becomes ever cheaper.
One of China’s major fashion groups, Bosideng, has just opened its first European boutique and headquarters at number 28, South Molton Street, in London’s West End. The menswear brand has built a six-storey – plus basement – building on the site of an old pub. The retail store has the use of three floors, whilst the rest of the building will be home to the group’s offices. The opening in London looks set to play a decisive role in Bosideng’s development in Europe, but no other opening is planned for the time being, said a spokesperson from the Chinese brand. If it proves to be a success, Bosideng’s move may encourage other Chinese retailers to venture into the Western market and take a stand against the tough economic situation.
The Bosideng group says it has invested 35 million pounds (44.8 million euros) in its retail property development in London. The unusual flagship store, built on the site of an old pub, is located just a few steps away from Bond Street and Oxford Street, in an area that some 24 million people pass through each year. “We’re delighted to be one of the first Chinese fashion brands to launch in Europe” said Gao Dekang, the group’s CEO. “Finding the right spot and the right building was our priority for launching our new high-end menswear line”. Gao Dekang has been chairman of the CCPIT, the Chinese chamber of commerce for the textile industry, since 2010.
By Florent Gilles