It's not unusual to pass a Zara store and do a double-take – didn't you just see that on the catwalk? As a brand, their speed and responsiveness to the latest fashion trends are key to Zara’s competitive advantage. Owned by the distribution group Inditex, we had a look at what makes Zara so fast that the New York Times called it "mind-spinningly supersonic".
Amancio Ortega founded Zara in 1975 as an attempt to better understand world markets for his fashion merchandise. From that first store in Spain, Zara has since expanded to more than 2,200 stores in 96 countries around the world.
In 2012, Inditex, Ortega’s parent company made up of Zara and other retail concepts and suppliers, reported total sales of US$20.7 billion, with Zara representing a powerful 66 per cent, or US$13.6 billion, of that total.
What’s the secret to Zara’s competitive advantage? Their supply chain.