Dr Green’s retail remedy

An interesting article on TopShop and Philip Green in last week’s IHT*. The first noteworthy nugget is that he already has a Broadway store in his clutches so TopShop’s New York debut really is imminent. The next morsel of good news is that India is next in his sights. Take it from me, Green could make a killing in India, the high street offering here is pretty damn uninspiring. Although they have Levi’s, Pepe, Benetton and Esprit, the stuff they sell to the Indian market is nothing like what you get in the UK. Think bad graphics, market-stall over-embellishment and an abundance of pockets, toggles and straps exploding from every seam. Denim brand Gas is about the only ‘high street’ label I’ve seen that bears a resemblance to what’s on sale elsewhere in the world. If Green can get the design right and the price right he will have India’s youth market firmly grasped in the palm of his hand.

Green also spouts opinion on where he thinks retails is heading. “It’s going to be now about special products, good people, good customer service, innovating, doing things that are new,” Green said. “And my belief is that, if you look at the market, everybody is running to price – and I am actually running away from price. I am running to special. And that’s what I think is going to see who wins and who loses.” This is what TopShop has always done well – the experience of fashion. (Shame he can’t do something about the experience of Bhs.) If you look at the other UK retail success stories – Apple, Dover Street Market, Selfridges – it proves his point. In this age of instant gratification, we’re all looking for the next unique experience. I’m definitely ready for a new wave of good customer service so let’s see how this pans out. Bring it on and fast Mr Green!

*Read the article here: http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/02/13/style/Rtop.php

Pic: www.topshop.com

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6 Responses to Dr Green’s retail remedy

  1. susie_bubble says:

    It’s so true that Topshop get the ‘experience’ right and trick you into thinking you’re buying something a bit more special than your average high street buy…

  2. Hazelnut says:

    It’s all about packaging, and about creating a hype. Topshop is also very good at translating runway looks very quickly, and cheaply, into the highstreet. The other thing about Topshop is that they know exactly who their customer is, and that is crucial in their successful branding…

  3. Blue Floppy Hat says:

    I was thinking the exact same thing the other day when I went to Levi’s to buy jeans- most of the high street clothing in India is fug, and that’s putting it kindly. And I shouldn’t even get started on what women’s non-ethnic clothing in this country can be like….about the only region of the country where I’ve noticed the girls dressing pretty decently on a regular basis is the North-East and Sikkim.
    And I’d be the first one screaming with joy if TopShop actually entered the Indian market- it’d interest me on a much more personal level than all the designer stuff (not to knock that, but it’s unreachable)- just as long as they give us the good stuff, design-wise. I actually heard that they were planning to expand further into Asia, including India, but nothing seems to have come of that..I’d like to have a source of nice clothes that isn’t my tailor.
    I really should shut up now.

  4. Blue Floppy Hat says:

    Also, it makes sense- most of their garments are manufactured in Asia (and in India too), why not sell them here?

  5. enc says:

    I can’t remember what good customer service is anymore. It’s a shame. I miss Topshop; I wish there was one near where I live.

  6. Vancouverista says:

    Now if only they’d expand their market into Canada. Le Sigh.

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