The “fast fashion” retail model pioneered by companies such as Zara and H&M has been taken a step farther by Primark, the U.K.-based retailer offering clothes at rock-bottom prices. In fact, the significant change in consumer habits since the financial crisis, which has seen value take priority over snobby attitudes on labels and brands, has been dubbed ‘the Primark effect.’
What’s the Big Idea?
The ability of the chain to sell jeans for £3 ($4.70) is due to its ‘no bells, no whistles’ business model, built around three cores: efficient supply chain/rapid turnover, limited operating costs, and large stores. Among its future challenges is corporate responsibility. Primark’s supply chain has been under scrutiny since activists revealed that at one point its goods from Bangladesh did not comply with child labor laws.