Ambitious to surpass Shein, Inditex expands its affordable fashion brand Lefties

The expansion of Lefties plays a crucial role in Inditex’s competitive strategy – the parent company of Zara – against fast fashion rivals like Shein and Temu.

Ambitious to surpass Shein, Inditex expands its affordable fashion brand Lefties
Ambitious to surpass Shein, Inditex expands its affordable fashion brand Lefties

Last autumn, Inditex reported outstanding business performance due to significant price increases. Inditex has held the title of the world’s fastest-growing fashion company for many years, but since platforms like Shein and Temu have become popular with consumers, the company has recognized the need to differentiate its brands from competitors.

After raising prices, Inditex saw its stock rise by 30%, and now they are preparing to counter Shein and Temu’s low-price strategy by introducing a new brand. Lefties was introduced twenty years ago as an outlet for Zara, but now it has become an independent brand with practical designs such as jeans, dresses, and accessories priced below 20 euros (equivalent to about 530,000 VND).

Lefties has 17 stores in the Middle East and South America and 25 stores in Spain. In Inditex’s home country, from 2019 to 2023, Lefties’ customer base has increased from 3.5 to 5 million, demonstrating the parent company Zara’s wise business move.

Inditex’s decision to relaunch Lefties aligns with changes made in Zara’s communication and production activities. By increasing retail prices and “elevating” the creativity of brand communication strategies to try to meet luxury taste demands through collaborations with renowned photographers such as Steven Meisel and Alasdair McLellan, Zara now targets a higher-end customer base than Shein and Temu.

The goal Inditex sets for Lefties seems to be to regain millions of customers currently inclined to invest in cheap fast fashion brands. By focusing on improving delivery speed, a feature that Chinese competitors in Europe are struggling with, Lefties has many opportunities for development. The brand also uses marketing methods similar to its competitors and collaborates with micro-influencers on social media to promote products, turning affordability into the brand’s unique selling proposition (USP).

Lefties has achieved initial success in Portugal, where it recorded more customers than Zara last year, in Romania and Turkey, where it opened its first stores, and in the United Arab Emirates, where it operates under a franchise business model.

At the same time, many brands owned by Inditex are facing difficulties in many stores worldwide. Specifically, in 2023, two subsidiary brands, Bershka and Pull&Bear, closed 585 branches.

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