Zara, a glimpse into the fast-fashion industry.

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The fashion industry with its frequent ups and downs of brands, is a fascinating business universe. In “The New York Times” Suzy Hansen analyzes one of its most successful actors during the last two decades, Inditex, the company behind the label “Zara”.
With a fortune of US$ 53 billion, Amancio Ortega Gaona, the Spanish founder of Zara, has recently overtaken Warren Buffet in personal wealth. Comparably his fashion label Zara outperformed its competition in the last two decades selling over 800 million garments per year in 5,900 stores worldwide. The stores are closely linked to the headquarters in La Coruna, a small city in the Galician part of Spain. Mixed teams of designers and managers meet customer responses very quickly to identify global trends. As a leader in “fast fashion” Zara quickly designs and ships garments, spearheading these trends in a closely interwoven system linking customer responses with design and production processes. Unlike many competitors who use global manufacturers, the company produces a significant proportion of its clothing locally, in or close to Spain. Making its money in the international world of glamour and fashion, internally the company is characterized by a culture of modesty and functionality.
Zara exemplifies that cost efficiency is a system approach and should not be equalized with the sum of isolated cost cutting attempts. Quality orientation and a fast adopting design strategy are the cornerstones of this system. In “Bloomberg Businessweek”, Sapna Maheshwari suggests that if consumers suffer a fast-fashion fatigue and turn to higher prized and longer lasting items, Zara will be one of the main beneficiaries of this trend.