Episodes
BoF retail correspondent Cathaleen Chen details the consumer shifts that have made it easier — and more popular than ever — to buy luxury dupes. Background:  A growing number of young consumers are embracing counterfeit Prada loafers and Gucci bags, as the internet has made access to these dupes easier than ever. The value of the fake and pirated goods market has tripled since 2013 to be worth $3 trillion, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. That’s thanks...
Published 11/30/22
As the economy weakens and funding dries up, digital brands may face pressure to sell from investors. To do so, they’ll need to prove they’re more than just another money-losing start-up. Background: Over the past few years, investors have been bullish on fast-growing digital brands — rewarding their rapid sales growth with sky-high valuations. More recently, physical retail has rebounded and e-commerce sales have shrunk. As a result, a number of digital-first brands are burning through cash...
Published 11/23/22
Published 11/23/22
The BoF Insights team shares details from their recent report on why these young consumers are so crucial to the success of the fashion industry — and what brands can do to woo them.  Background:  Gen-Z, or those born between 1997 and 2010, accounts for 25 percent of the world’s population. With the oldest of the generation turning 25 this year, the group has already come into its own with a purchasing power of about $360 billion. Fashion brands have always chased youth, but Gen-Z brings a...
Published 11/16/22
A panel of experts, including BoF’s Lauren Sherman and Diana Pearl, detail how the business of influencing has evolved — and where it's all going. Things move fast on the internet. In just the past few years, there have been a number of changes in the social media space and the influencer economy built around it. For one, brands are betting on influencers with day jobs, working with creators like Sky Ting Yoga founder Krissy Jones or James Whiteside, principal dancer at the American Ballet...
Published 11/09/22
BoF’s Daniel-Yaw Miller discusses streetwear’s evolution from subculture to high fashion favourite — and whether the aesthetic’s waning influence spells its end.  Background:  After years of build up, from its origins in cultural movements like New York’s hip-hop scene and LA’s skating community to early commercialisation in the early 2000s from brands like Fubu and Stussy and Japanese designers Nigo and Hiroshi Fujiwara, by the late 2010s, streetwear found itself at the centre of luxury...
Published 11/02/22
BoF luxury editor Robert Williams unpacks how the French luxury brand has managed to grab the industry’s attention and maintain a sound business model without outside help.  Simon Porte Jacquemus is one of fashion’s hottest independent designers — and his namesake label is one of its most impressive businesses. The company, known for its tiny bags and minimalist playfulness, is on track to double annual revenues to over €200 million ($199 million) by year-end, with plans to reach €500 million...
Published 10/26/22
BoF editor-at-large Tim Blanks describes the designer and businessman’s life, continuing impact on fashion, mysterious succession plans and newfound vulnerability. Over his decades-long career, Giorgio Armani has built one of fashion’s most successful businesses. Known for his signature tailoring and functional glamour, at 88, he’s retained his dominance in an ever-changing, hyper-competitive industry. Amid speculation about what's to come for the Armani fashion empire, BoF editor-at-large...
Published 10/19/22
How the 75-year-old luxury house tripled its revenue in just four years, according to BoF luxury editor Robert Williams.  Background:  In 1947, months after being founded, Christian Dior Couture revolutionised dressing with its “New Look,” an exaggerated hourglass-shaped silhouette. In the ’80s, the then-withering brand was bought by entrepreneur Bernard Arnault, who would eventually transform it into one of the largest luxury labels in the world. In 2017, when LVMH — of which Arnault is...
Published 10/12/22
Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard’s is giving  away his billion-dollar company. BoF chief sustainability correspondent Sarah Kent explains why — and what influence the change could have on the culture of business.   Background:  Patagonia has long been the standard bearer for responsible capitalism: the jackets and fleece maker has donated 1 percent of all sales — which top $1 billion a year according to The New York Times —  to environmental groups since the ’80s, and was one of the first...
Published 10/05/22
After years of speculation, designer e-tailers are finally consolidating in an effort to increase profits and gain market share. BoF’s Robert Williams and Tamison O’Connor unpack what’s in store for major players including Farfetch, YNAP and MatchesFashion.  Background:  The launch of Net-a-Porter in 2000 changed fashion forever, heralding the first phase of luxury e-commerce, and inspiring a slew of competitors to get in the game. But in an increasingly competitive market, e-tailers have...
Published 09/28/22
BoF’s retail correspondent Cathaleen Chen joins The Debrief to discuss how the mall brand plotted a turnaround that’s starting to pay off. Background: Gap Inc. has had a hard year, accented last week by a dramatic Ye break-up following an anticlimactic retail roll-out of Yeezy Gap, which it staked its comeback on a year ago. Old Navy sales sank, and its once fast-growing sportswear label Athleta has seen sales level. But there’s been one glimmer of hope in the midst of it all: Banana...
Published 09/21/22
Louis Vuitton is expected to name its Virgil Abloh successor within weeks. BoF’s Imran Amed joins Lauren Sherman to discuss what luxury labels think about when recruiting top designers.   Background: Louis Vuitton has spent almost a year searching for a Virgil Abloh successor after the designer died in November 2021. According to sources, Martine Rose, Grace Wales Bonner and Telfar Clemens are among the names that were considered by owner LVMH, and the decision is expected to be announced...
Published 09/14/22
BoF’s workplace and talent correspondent Sheena Butler-Young unpacks how fashion’s labour market has evolved in the past year, and what positions brands are hiring for now.      Background:      As companies confront a potential recession, they’re making changes to the way they hire, and who they hire. During the pandemic, the number of fashion jobs requiring expertise in web3 or the metaverse rose exponentially. But now, brands are once again focused on hiring for jobs in traditional...
Published 09/07/22
BoF technology correspondent Marc Bain and contributor Chantal Fernandez join Lauren Sherman to discuss how TikTok took over fashion conversation — and what brands need to know to get the most out of the platform.     Background:      It seems Instagram’s autonomous rule over fashion is finished. While the Meta-owned app still has more users, a growing number of brands and creators are turning to TikTok as their go-to marketing platform. As TikTok ascended to Gen-Z-favourite status,...
Published 08/31/22
BoF’s Sheena Butler-Young and Tamison O’Connor join Lauren Sherman to discuss how a new generation of entrepreneurs are driving growth in this underdeveloped category.   Background:      Monique Rodriguez turned a series of Instagram tutorials — where she made hair care concoctions out of ingredients found in her kitchen — into one of the most recognisable multicultural hair care brands in the US, Mielle Organics. The label just secured a reported $100 million non-controlling investment...
Published 08/24/22
Mounting customer acquisition costs and a pressure to grow fast have made it hard to build a profitable DTC business. BoF deputy editor Brian Baskin and retail correspondent Cathaleen Chen join Lauren Sherman to analyse the past, present and future of the market.      Background:      About a decade ago, a number of flashy direct-to-consumer brands peddling premium products and promising to cut out retail’s middlemen emerged on the scene. Quickly, names like Warby Parker, Allbirds and...
Published 08/17/22
BoF’s Cathaleen Chen and Marc Bain join Lauren Sherman to talk about retailers’ big hires, hopes and plans for bringing their brands back to life.   Background:      J.Crew and Gap defined how Americans dressed for much of the ’90s and 2000s, until their clothes grew stale, malls emptied out and fast fashion took retail’s reins. Then, during the pandemic, J.Crew filed for bankruptcy and Gap closed hundreds of stores. More recently, they’ve both orchestrated attempts to win back...
Published 08/10/22
In an effort to reignite consumer fire, the Italian megabrand has done some restructuring. Bernstein luxury analyst Luca Solca breaks down what it all means.    Background:    In the late 2010s, Gucci pulled off a successful turnaround by aligning creative director Alessandro Michele’s unique, baroque aesthetic and Jacopo Venturini’s expert merchandising under the leadership of chief executive Marco Bizzarri, according to Luca Solca, Bernstein luxury analyst and BoF contributor. They...
Published 08/03/22
Kim Kardashian’s ‘solution wear’ line was recently valued at $3.2 billion. BoF correspondent Alexandra Mondalek charts the rise of the brand, and details what challenges lie ahead.     Background:    Founded in 2019 by Kim Kardashian and retail veteran Jens Grede, ‘solution wear’ line Skims has taken the fashion industry by storm, disrupting the sleepy shapewear category and fetching a $3.2 billion valuation following its Series B funding round in January 2022. Now, the brand is looking...
Published 07/27/22
BoF’s Daniel-Yaw Miller unpacks why — and how — sports stars including Russell Westbrook and Megan Rapinoe are running their own labels, with full financial and creative control.  Background:  Athletes have long been part of the fashion conversation. In the past, they’ve capitalised on their influence by inking brand endorsements with the likes of Nike and Adidas. Now, stars like the NBA’s Russell Westbrook, soccer player Megan Rapinoe and runner Allyson Felix are taking it a step further...
Published 07/20/22
After a pandemic pivot to e-commerce, many brands are back to working with third-party retailers, this time, with better terms.     Background:   The wholesale model, while offering exposure and some upfront revenue, did not always have the best terms for vendors. Department store bankruptcies, pandemic-induced store closures and the boom in online shopping pushed brands further towards their direct-to-consumer and e-commerce businesses to drive revenue.    But that’s beginning to...
Published 07/13/22
BoF correspondents Chavie Lieber and Daniel-Yaw Miller discuss why fashion brands are making products for sports like pickleball, padel, rugby, boxing and skiing.      Background:    Two decades ago, Lululemon built its brand around yoga — then considered counter culture. Today, it’s a $6 billion behemoth that makes products for everything from running to swimming and tennis, becoming a model for upstarts like Gymshark and Nobull hoping to filch market share from giants like Nike and...
Published 07/06/22
The vice president of fashion and shopping partnerships at Meta and BoF technology correspondent Marc Bain join Lauren Sherman to discuss the company’s new marketplace — which sells digital items from Thom Browne, Balenciaga and Prada — and the future of fashion on the platform.      Background:    Social-media company Meta has launched a virtual clothing store, and Balenciaga, Prada and Thom Browne are the first major designers to create  looks fit for avatars in Mark Zuckerberg’s...
Published 06/29/22
BoF’s workplace and talent correspondent Sheena Butler-Young explains why managers in the fashion and beauty industries are struggling to balance their youngest employees’ expectations against the needs of their businesses.   Background: The youth-obsessed fashion and beauty industries can’t get enough of Gen-Z talent: they believe they need to recruit more entry-level employees in order to maintain relevance and attract new customers. But the cohort is entering the workforce with big...
Published 06/22/22