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US' Retail Apparel Sales Up After 3 Years
Deckers' Q4 Jumps 275%
Turkey Could Lose 25,000 Firms
La Senza to Close US
Benetton Targeted by PETA
Intimate London's February Show
India Expects Increase inn Exports
Breast Enhancing Cream Demonstrated In Public
Lands End to Axe 375 Jobs
Dolce & Gabbana Split
Cross Dressing Underwear Thief
US Appeals Safeguard Case
Fredrick's of Hollywood Is Back
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March 1, 2005
Women's Wear Journal
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US' Retail Apparel Sales Up
After 3 Years
US retail apparel sales in 2004 totaled $173 billion, a 4% rise from $166 billion in 2003 and the first increase in three
“Apparel's comeback is good news for an industry that's been looking for
ways to find growth. This year I expect to see consumers step up to the plate and buy apparel as needed...after all, you can only wear your khakis for so long before they
wear out or don't fit anymore,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst, The NPD Group.
“Consumers want clothes that are new and exciting; if the industry can deliver that then I think the growth will continue,”
Throughout the nineties, the apparel industry witnessed steady growth, peaking in 2000 at nearly $176 billion. In 2001,
apparel sales took a major dip in dollars and the downward trend continued for two years due to low consumer confidence,
increasing unemployment rates and consumers' lack of passion for fashion.
Across gender segments, men’s and women’s clothing sales both showed growth, while children’s apparel sales were flat.
In 2004, men's apparel sales produced over $49 billion, up from nearly $47 billion in 2003, over a 5% increase in dollars.
Women's apparel sales earned almost $95 billion in 2004, up from $90 billion the previous year, nearly a 5% increase in
Children’s apparel sales were $29 billion, showing the same sales from 2003.
Among the top apparel categories in 2004, men’s tailored clothing flew off
the racks. The category, consisting of men’s suits, suit separates and sports coats
and jackets, experienced double-digit growth of about 24%.
Total men’s tailored clothing sales were over $4 billion dollars in 2004, up from over $3 billion in 2003. Men’s
fleece wear and sleepwear also displayed strong growth, up 12% and 11% respectively.
“Consumers, especially men, realized they finally needed to update their wardrobe because it was either out of style or it
didn’t fit anymore and so they were forced to buy new clothes,” said Cohen.
“Women, on the other hand, played dress-up by adding color and feminine florals to their closets.”
For women, 2004 was all about knit tops and sweaters. Women's tops generated over $31 billion dollars and grew 9% from the
The women’s swimwear and intimate apparel businesses both grew 8% in dollar sales. The outdated thong was replaced with the
new, stylish boy panty.
Deckers' Q4 Jumps 275%
Footwear company Deckers Outdoor Corporation has posted a 275% surge in fourth quarter profit on strong demand for Ugg
footwear, improved deliveries from factories, and good retail sell-thru.
Fourth-quarter net income was $9.2m, up from $2.5m last year.
Net sales for the three months ending December 31, 2004, rose 108% to $74.2 million compared to the $35.7m registered last
For the year ending December 31, 2004, net sales rose 77% to $214.8m compared to $121.1m last year.
Full-year net income rose 179% to $25.5m, compared to $9.2m last year.
Chief executive officer Doug Otto said the company was “extremely pleased” with the results and that the company expected the
high demand for the Ugg brand to continue to boost sales.
Otto added that the company had taken “a number of important steps” to
better its balance sheet and gain a better long-term position for the company.
The Teva division saw full-year sales rise 15% to $88.2m from $76.5m last year, while Ugg sales rose 215% to $116.2m from
$36.9m last year. Simple sales increased 34% to $10.3m compared to $7.7m a year ago.
by Mara Susskind Kalcheim
We were all saddened by the passing of Mary Jane White, wife of
independent representative Carl White on January 3, 2005, after a prolonged struggle with cancer. Mary Jane, who was loved by all who knew her, was a frequent visitor at the International Lingerie Show in Las Vegas inspiration to all her family and
extended friends. She loved travel, bridge, and her husband, children, grandchildren, and her first great grandchild. She retired from her long term job at
Danka, Ins. in 1999. In 2002 she was diagnosed with cancer (Sarcoma) and valiantly fought and participated in three clinical trials.
On a very personal note, but speaking for many in our industry who knew Mary Jane, she was a real lady and we all used to look forward to seeing this upbeat woman who never complained. The saddest part is that Mary Jane and Carl would have celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary on April 8, 2005. Plans were already in motion, but it was not to be and we are all so sorry. Our thoughts and
prayers are with Carl White and family during this very sad time.
Turkey Could Lose 25,000 Textile, Clothing Firms
Industry leaders estimate that up to 25,000 Turkish textile and clothing subcontractors may be forced to shut down over the
next few years, and 3 million workers could lose their jobs, because of Chinese competition and high input costs.
Yilmaz Kocaoglu, president of the Istanbul Textile and Clothing Subcontractor's Association (ITFAD in Turkish), said in a
statement that 180,000 companies operating in the textile and clothing business are already suffering from financial
He added that 13,000 companies were closed down in 2004.
Highlighting the problems of the sector, Mr Yilmaz warns that unless the government takes urgent measures to slow rising
energy costs and taxes, the industry will find it impossible to compete with China.
Debora Bello models an outfit by Argentine designer
Roberto Giordano during a fashion show in Vina del Mar
2000 Jobs Saved by Allders
More than 2,000 Allders’ jobs look likely to have been saved after rival retailers agreed to buy 24 of the group’s 45 stores.
Debenhams is taking eight outlets, Associated British Foods’ discount fashion chain Primark is buying six, and department
store group Bhs is seizing 10. Allders went into administration last month, and has so far axed more than 800 staff.
Administrator Kroll said a “significant” number of workers would be taken on by their new owners.
‘Ban Benetton’ Billboards by
Animal rights group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has launched a series of billboard advertisements in
Florida urging consumers to stay away from the Benetton fashion chain.
The ads, which carry the tagline ‘Help Stop Cruelty to Animals, Boycott Benetton,’ are also due to be rolled out in San
Francisco, California, and Baltimore, Maryland.
PETA has targeted Italy-based Benetton for refusing to join other major retailers – Abercrombie & Fitch, JCrew and UK-based
Look and George – in refusing to buy wool that comes from mutilated Australian lambs.
PETA’s campaign against Benetton kicked off with a December 15,
protest at the company’s flagship stores in Milan, Italy, and
New York City.
A similar billboard ran for one day in New York City and was seen by tens of thousands of people before it was pulled because
the image was so gruesome.
PETA launched its campaign to boycott Australian wool last October in protest at live sheep exports and the practice of
EU Urges China to Restrain
Peter Mandelson, the European Union trade commissioner, called on China to restrain its textile and clothing exports
following the lifting of quotas at the beginning of the year.
Speaking to the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing on his first official visit to China, Mr
Mandelson said: “We can all benefit from liberalization and we are not going back to the system of restrictions that existed
for so many years.
“But I think that some moderation and caution in the rate of growth of Chinese textiles exports – pacing it over time – will
help to ensure a harmonious adjustment to this new global trading environment.”
He added: “If there is a perception that China is reaping the benefits of free trade without meeting the standards of fair
trade, there will be a negative response in Europe and elsewhere.”
Mandelson said he had been “encouraged” by China’s readiness to introduce taxes on its textile and clothing exports from
January 1, 2005 in an attempt to inhibit a dramatic surge of exports, but added: “There is much concern that these measures
will not be sufficient.”
“It is quite possible that Europe will use special safeguards, but not certain,” Mr Mandelson said.
He also called on China to face up to other international responsibilities, such as the gradual
liberalization of the exchange rate of the Yuan and the protection of human rights.
La Senza To Close US Stores
Women’s lingerie retailer La Senza Corp is to close its five US stores after admitting they failed to generate sufficient
sales for a large-scale roll out.
The decision ends an 18-month test of the American lingerie market for the Montreal-based company.
Details and timing of the closings still have to be finalized.
Mr Laurence Lewin, president of La Senza Inc, said: “Although these test units were reasonably successful, the sales volumes
generated in the test period did not reach an appropriate level to encourage us to invest additional capital to ‘roll out’
the chain within the US.”
“It is obvious that our continued and profitable expansion of La Senza Lingerie and La Senza Girl in Canada, together with
the ever accelerating development of corporate licensed stores in other countries, suggests that we must apply our resources
and talent to these profitable strategies, while concurrently stopping the losses that emanate from our US operations.”
La Senza owns 298 Canadian stores under the banners La Senza, Silk & Satin and La Senza Girl. In addition, 231 independently
owned La Senza and La Senza Girl stores operate in 20 other countries under
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