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Article
Publication date: 8 July 2021

Huifeng Bai, Weijing He, Jin Shi, Julie McColl and Christopher Moore

This empirical research, adopting an international retailing perspective, aims to examine the parenting advantages offered by emerging market multinationals (EMNCs) in…

Abstract

Purpose

This empirical research, adopting an international retailing perspective, aims to examine the parenting advantages offered by emerging market multinationals (EMNCs) in luxury fashion retail sector.

Design/methodology/approach

The researchers adopted a qualitative case study, and the qualitative data were collected through ten semi-structured interviews with senior managers.

Findings

It is a win–win situation for the EMNCs as parent groups of Western luxury fashion brands, as the EMNCs can access critical assets including advanced brand management expertise, retailing know-how, and the services skills needed for higher income consumers. Meanwhile, the subsidiary brands benefit from a high degree of autonomy, intra-group resource utilisation, a competitive brand portfolio and most importantly economies of scales in the value chain, particularly in production. The perceived risks of EMNCs ownership include potentially restricted autonomy and the uncertainty over corporate development activities in the future, as well as the risks of diluting brand image caused by the inconsistency between country of origin and country of ownership.

Research limitations/implications

Very few EMNCs have moved into luxury fashion retailing to date, which means that the sampling frame was small. The findings were generated from China, which is perceived to be of considerable psychic distance in terms of culture and policies compared to other emerging markets that have been heavily influenced by colonialism.

Practical implications

This paper suggests that practitioners, particularly EMNCs, support their subsidiary luxury fashion brands through parenting advantages and develop their own high-end fashion brands through internationalisation.

Originality/value

This empirical study contributes to the current international retailing literature by offering in depth insights of parenting advantages offered by EMNCs in luxury fashion retailing. It also enriches the EMNC literature, which has mainly adopted an international business scope, by extending this understanding into luxury fashion retailing.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 4 March 2014

Patsy Perry and Margarita Kyriakaki

The purpose of this paper is to explore the decision-making process used by luxury fashion retail buyers in Greece in order to assess the applicability of Sheth's (1981…

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8461

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the decision-making process used by luxury fashion retail buyers in Greece in order to assess the applicability of Sheth's (1981) model to the selection of brands and collections by retail buyers in luxury fashion resellers.

Design/methodology/approach

The study takes an interpretive approach, utilising participant observation and semi-structured interviews with retail buyers in five luxury fashion reseller companies in Greece, which boasts the world's highest proportion of luxury fashion consumers. Qualitative data were analysed thematically according to the theoretical constructs in Sheth's (1981) model of merchandise buyer behaviour.

Findings

Brand reputation, quality, appropriateness for the market and exclusive distribution were the most important criteria for supplier selection. For evaluating merchandise, the most important criteria were design, style, fashionability and quality. The most relevant influencer of decision making in supplier selection was the competitive structure in terms of the power balance between retailer and brand. For merchandise selection, the most relevant influencing factors were retailer size, management mentality, product positioning and type of decision (re-buy or new task).

Research limitations/implications

Due to the exploratory nature of the study and its focus on the context of a particular geographical marketplace, the findings may not be generalised to other countries.

Originality/value

This paper provides an insight into the decision-making practice of retail buyers in Greek luxury fashion retailers, where the buying task involves balancing the retailer's commercial interests with a more cultural role in terms of shaping fashion trends and generating PR and publicity for the retailer. The task is further complicated by the power imbalance between retailer and brand, enabling brands to impose limitations on the buyer's decision. Additionally, the combined influence of shortening product life cycles, increasing product variety and the emergence of a new and younger luxury fashion consumer requires a shift from intuitive to scientific, data-driven decision making.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

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Article
Publication date: 3 February 2020

Rosanna Passavanti, Eleonora Pantano, Constantinos Vasilios Priporas and Saverino Verteramo

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which luxury brand retailers use new technologies as a tool for corporate marketing communication.

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1510

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which luxury brand retailers use new technologies as a tool for corporate marketing communication.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors used a multiple-case study approach consisting of five information-rich cases, with the similar characteristics of large firms selling luxury brands which are aware of the importance of innovation. In each company, the authors interviewed the key person in charge of marketing innovation strategies and collected data from annual reports, press releases and direct observation of all the new technology categories used.

Findings

The findings of this paper reveal that this sector is considerably aware of the benefits of using new media as a marketing communication tool, while the effective use of these new media is still limited.

Research limitations/implications

This paper provides an empirical contribution to the emerging topic of innovation and technology management in retailing, with the emphasis being placed on the luxury sector through an in-depth investigation of the usage of new technologies by the firms studied.

Originality/value

This paper is the first one investigating thoroughly the luxury sector usage of new technologies to improve corporate marketing communication.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 16 February 2010

Christopher M. Moore, Anne Marie Doherty and Stephen A. Doyle

Employing the qualitative method, this paper sets out to investigate the role and function of flagship stores as a market entry mechanism employed by luxury fashion retailers.

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29377

Abstract

Purpose

Employing the qualitative method, this paper sets out to investigate the role and function of flagship stores as a market entry mechanism employed by luxury fashion retailers.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper employs an interpretive research position, utilising qualitative techniques in the form of semi‐structured interviews with élite informants. In total, 12 luxury fashion retailers form the empirical focus of the work.

Findings

The paper identifies the defining characteristics of luxury retailers' flagship stores. It finds that luxury flagship stores represent a strategic approach to market entry that is employed to support, enhance and develop distribution activities within a foreign market. The interdependence of flagship stores and the wholesaling method of distribution is highlighted. The importance of the flagship store in reinforcing and enhancing the retailer's luxury status and enhancing and maintaining relationships not only with customers but also with distribution partners and the fashion media is found to be significant.

Practical implications

The paper provides practical information to luxury retailers on the role and importance of flagship stores as a method of entering international markets.

Originality/value

Flagship stores are a pivotal aspect of any luxury fashion retailer's internationalisation strategy. For the first time in the literature, the paper provides insights into their form and function and an understanding of why they are crucial to the international development of luxury retailers despite their prohibitively high cost.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 44 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 8 June 2015

Elisa Arrigo

– The purpose of this paper is to explore the strategic role of the flagship store geographic location in improving luxury brand positioning.

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6665

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the strategic role of the flagship store geographic location in improving luxury brand positioning.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on the literature review on flagship store format, retail geography and place marketing, the study adopted a qualitative research design based on case studies of six luxury fashion retailers. A conceptual framework of flagship store location has been proposed, and the flagship store locations of these case studies have been examined in six worldwide capitals.

Findings

The presence and the geographical proximity of many flagship stores in the same particular urban area contribute to developing a “luxury sense of place” related to their brands. Thus, through a co-branding strategy inherent in the selection of the best site for their flagship stores, luxury firms improve their brands’ positioning by the generated “luxury sense of place”.

Research limitations/implications

The principal limitation of the research is the scale of the case studies, but the findings show the feasibility of extending the research basis to a larger number of luxury retailers.

Originality/value

This study addresses an under-researched area in the retail literature, investigating the relationship between flagship store location and luxury branding. It is the only research to explore the social dimension of the geographic location of luxury flagship stores and the first one to examine cities in terms of flagship store density.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 43 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 22 September 2021

Huifeng Bai, Julie McColl and Christopher Moore

From an international retailing perspective, this empirical study aims to examine luxury fashion retailers' changing marketing strategies in China.

Abstract

Purpose

From an international retailing perspective, this empirical study aims to examine luxury fashion retailers' changing marketing strategies in China.

Design/methodology/approach

Using case studies of 14 luxury fashion retailers, qualitative data were collected via 31 semi-structured executive interviews.

Findings

Both standardised global and localised multinational marketing strategies were found to have initially been employed by luxury fashion retailers entering into China. Subsequently, localised multinational strategies became increasingly important for their post-entry operations and business development, particularly in terms of their product strategies. More specifically, as well as the introduction of Chinese brand names, product design has been adapted according to Chinese market conditions, and product portfolios have been adapted to satisfy regional differences. However, localised product sourcing in China is far less common.

Research limitations/implications

As the findings are generated from China, they may not explain luxury fashion retailers' marketing strategies in other markets. Despite the relatively small sample size, the 14 luxury fashion retailer case studies originate from across a wide range of countries, retail formats and ownership structures and are therefore considered to be varied enough to represent the market.

Practical implications

The study offers practitioners insights into the success that can be generated by the manipulation of marketing strategies, particularly product strategies, within the world's second biggest luxury market.

Originality/value

This paper extends the current international retailing literature by examining and comparing the motives and practices of luxury fashion retailers and the increasing localisation of their marketing strategies in China as they move from initial market entry into their post-entry operations.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Article
Publication date: 15 November 2013

Marie-Cécile Cervellon and Rachael Coudriet

This research aims to investigate the factors which contribute to the power of luxury brands in the stores and the means through which brand power meaning transfers to the…

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6459

Abstract

Purpose

This research aims to investigate the factors which contribute to the power of luxury brands in the stores and the means through which brand power meaning transfers to the clients.

Design/methodology/approach

The research protocol follows a phenomenological approach, through analyses of narratives of customers with lived shopping experiences in luxury stores. Data were collected in two phases: first, a collection of experiences from clients with different cultural backgrounds in the same store; second, a comparison of experiences for the same client in thirty-three luxury stores around the world. This cross-examination procedure enhances the trustworthiness of the findings.

Findings

Although French and Raven ' s typology of power (referent, reward, coercive, legitimate, expert) is relevant when studying the luxury brand-client relationship, it is not sufficient to explain entirely the sources of the luxury brand power. Through the brand cathedral (the flagship store), the brand ambassadors (sales representative), the brand protocol (rituals and selling ceremony) and the brand treasures (the products), the luxury brand exerts an auratic power which achieves the sacralization of the brand.

Practical implications

These marks of power are difficult to transfer virtually through internet websites. To establish this power, luxury brands need a control over their operations, at least the visual merchandising and the customer relationship. This reinforces the importance of retailing in the luxury industry and the strategic role of company-owned-stores, particularly in “new luxury markets” where the auratic power of the brand is not necessarily established. Additionally, when there is power asymmetry in a service encounter, the customer becomes “hyper-vigilant” regarding the service provided. In luxury stores, the salespersons should be trained to deliver a luxury service, personalized to the very needs of the client.

Originality/value

To the authors ' knowledge, this research is the first to investigate consumers ' perception of luxury brand power.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 41 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 26 November 2020

Yanan Yu, Lori Rothenberg and Marguerite Moore

The purpose of this paper is to identify the realistic trade-offs young consumers make when evaluating luxury co-branding combinations based on signalling theory.

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1634

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the realistic trade-offs young consumers make when evaluating luxury co-branding combinations based on signalling theory.

Design/methodology/approach

Conjoint analysis was employed to evaluate the relative impact of four major attributes (i.e. brand combinations, retail channels, uniqueness and price) on consumer desirability for luxury co-branding combinations. The data were analysed using desirability indices.

Findings

Brand combinations, uniqueness and price significantly impact consumer desirability of luxury co-branding combinations. The luxury brand and sportswear combination results in the highest desirability when price is more similar to the sportswear constituent and participants perceive that the collaboration as exclusive.

Practical implications

The results suggest that luxury brands need to consider the partnering brand's retail format primarily for co-branding strategy. Luxury brand collaborations with sportswear and premium priced streetwear brands are more likely to result in higher desirability among consumers compared to collaborations with fast fashion and mass-market brands. Additionally, uniqueness may not be effective as a point of differentiation in cases where luxury brands cannot guarantee a single yearly collaboration.

Originality/value

The decision to use existing brands for the fictitious combinations developed more sensible scenarios for respondents. In addition, rather than discrete questions, attribute-based combinations provide a more realistic depiction of consumers' decision making on luxury co-branding. Finally, the results provide marketing practitioners with practical directions for future development of fashion luxury co-branding strategy.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 49 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2012

Karinna Nobbs, Christopher M. Moore and Mandy Sheridan

Since the concept of the flagship store format was first introduced to retailing in the 1970s, both its form and function have evolved considerably. The highest…

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11116

Abstract

Purpose

Since the concept of the flagship store format was first introduced to retailing in the 1970s, both its form and function have evolved considerably. The highest concentration of flagships can be seen in the luxury fashion market. This paper aims first to define the flagship concept in terms of its key characteristics, and second to outline the academic and industry developments, thereby charting its evolution.

Design/methodology/approach

Research was undertaken qualitatively due to the exploratory theory building nature of the subject area and the absence of accepted theoretical frameworks. This took the form of non participant observation and in‐depth interviews with brand representatives within seven major fashion capitals.

Findings

The research identifies essential elements of the luxury store format: its scale and size which usually exceeds functional need; it is derived and built on the twin features of exclusivity and uniqueness; it seeks to offer the customer a justification for their visit. The format evolves and adapts to find new ways of generating and communicating differentiation.

Research limitations/implications

The findings provide direction for future research in the area, in particular, an opportunity to investigate how luxury flagship stores adapt in order to accommodate market conditions.

Originality/value

The paper delineates the characteristics of the luxury flagship store format and identifies a new characteristic of this format.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 40 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 26 June 2019

Jihyun Kim

This research provides a comprehensive overview of the luxury brand cognitive and affective experience, category ownerships and consumption level of affluent adult…

Abstract

Purpose

This research provides a comprehensive overview of the luxury brand cognitive and affective experience, category ownerships and consumption level of affluent adult consumers in the USA. The purpose of this study was to illuminate generational cohorts’ differences and/or similarities among the consumers regarding collecting behavior of, brand self-congruity toward and emotional brand attachment with fashion luxury brands.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a cross-sectional quantitative approach, the authors conducted a national, representative online survey, 443 usable responses were collected from four generational cohorts, namely, older boomers, younger boomers, Generation Xers and Millennials, who reported an annual household income of US$150,000 or more. Descriptive and multivariate statistical analyses were used to provide the empirical findings.

Findings

Findings suggest that there are significant differences in the luxury brands they owned the most; Millennials exhibited significantly more frequent purchases of luxury fashion goods for all retail types – both brick-and-mortar and online, as well as upscale and discount-image retailers, compared to older Baby Boomers; and there are clear distinctions of cognitive, affective and behavioral responses toward fashion luxury goods between Millennials and older Baby Boomers. For instance, Millennials are more emotionally attached to luxury fashion brands, they see themselves more aligned with the brand image, and they collect such goods significantly more, compared to the older Baby Boomers.

Originality/value

By providing empirical evidence of contrasting each generational group’s unique consumption behavior in terms of luxury brand goods such as ownership level (accessible vs high-end luxury), retail channel choice behavior, cognitive, affective and behavioral responses toward the luxury fashion goods, the authors provided clear strategies for the luxury brand managers regarding two distinctive segments in the luxury marketplace.

Details

Research Journal of Textile and Apparel, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1560-6074

Keywords

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