The biggest fashion group on the planet.
Based out of Spain, this multinational clothing manufacturer has its headquarters in Arteixo. The company owns and operates more than seven thousand stores in more than ninety markets all over the world. Its primary and most popular store is Zara, though it owns or franchises a huge array of brands. These include Pull and Bear, Bershka, Massimo Dutti, Uterque, and Stradivarius.
One of the things that sets this company apart is the creative business model that it employs. Rather that putting most of its resources into the upcoming fashion season, Inditex puts a little bit of money into the front end of each season’s line and then dives deep into customer feedback. With that feedback, it shapes the designs and uses efficient techniques of production to get its newly customer approved products back into its stores.
In fact, the company goes from prototype to full production in less than a week. More than fifty percent of the product creation happens right in the local markets, which shortens the lead times and allows the model to work. For the company’s most popular brand, Zara, the company can get its pieces from design to store shelves in as little as two weeks.
The founder of Inditex, Amancio Ortega, began in the design industry in the 1960s. He worked for a small shirt manufacturer in Spain. With his wife, Rosalia Mera, Ortega began creating original designs. They made their clothing right out of their house, working to open a factory. Before long, that goal came true and they opened a clothing manufacturing factory. Out of that factory, they sold clothing to Ortega’s former company as well as to other clients.
The couple opened their very first storefront in 1975, called Zara. The appeal of the company from the start was its high fashion that came at a price that people could afford.
Early on, the company used technology to push it into the future. Inditex worked with a local professor named Jose Maria Castellano to expand the computing power behind the fashion. That would prove to be game changing for Inditex.
By 1989, the company had expanded into the American market.
Unfortunately, the company far outlived the marriage of its founders. Ortega would become the second richest person in Europe and the seventh richest person on earth. Mera is the wealthiest self-made woman in the world. The two divorced in the 1980s.
Most fashion companies rely heavily on print media to market their designs. Inditex has never been a traditional fashion company.
The primary mode of advertising for Inditex is through billboards in its regional markets. It also puts major celebrity endorsements into its budget. In store displays are another essential part of the marketing plan for Inditex brands. Prime locations for its commercial operations allow the company to use window displays that are spectacular and draw customers. This also leans into its quick product turnaround model.
The company has a presence in countries all over the world, all grown out of its innovative marketing style and unique vision.