THE STRATEGY OF CHILDREN'S RETAIL IN A PERIOD OF RAPID TRANSFORMATIONS
Anastasia Vasilkova, Development Director of TM Choupette, took part in the online conference NR LIVE "Strategy for the development of the children's goods market in a period of rapid changes". On the air, Anastasia spoke about the investment franchise, the pros and cons of marketplaces, whether consumer behavior has changed and how the pandemic has affected sales.
At the conference, the experts touched on the topic of the "new reality" of consumer behavior. According to Anastasia Vasilkova, digitalization, new technologies and omnichannel appeared a few years before the pandemic, and during the self-isolation, the retail sector did not change much. The trend for smart consumption during quarantine was revealed most vividly — the development director of TM Choupette believes that if there are no further harsh conditions, then it will also develop gently.
If we talk about demand in the summer months, August exceeded the expectations of the brand, as Like-For-Like compared to last year was +18%. However, this demand is compensatory, as sales were significantly lower in previous months.
Anastasia also spoke about the investment franchise, a new format that the brand has recently launched. "Of course, we are not the first to come up with an investment franchise, but it is almost never used in the fashion industry. In our interpretation, it is based on the basic postulate: the partner invests and bears investment risks - and the franchisor manages the store. However, the task of Choupette is not just to take the leadership into our own hands - we want to teach how to manage the store. For several years, we will develop the necessary skills in our partner through the format of an investment franchise, and then we will transfer it to an independent mode. This is our ideal vision of the picture. That is why we do not just manage, but advise and offer ready-made solutions, which we discuss with franchisees and jointly implement. Thus, the partner is actively involved in the process. This format has already shown good results during the pandemic and is now continuing to develop. The advantage of an investment franchise is that it correlates well with market demand: people are willing to invest money, but are afraid to manage due to lack of competencies. Thus, the Choupette brand realizes the dream of all aspiring businessmen to invest in business, do nothing and receive dividends.»
During the conference, such an important topic as marketplaces was touched upon. According to Anastasia, it is impossible to ignore them, because they increase brand awareness and give good sales. However, the downside is that it is impossible to control the pricing policy of certain online retailers, for example, Wildberries. Each brand develops its own strategy of mutually beneficial partnership with such large aggregators.
In conclusion, Anastasia Vasilkova shared her thoughts on what to pay attention to in the next three years. In her opinion, the channel between the manufacturer and the end user is getting shorter, so now it is important to understand consumer behavior and make the most of your knowledge in this direction.