The times are blooming | Business Chapter of Innovation 3.0 Chinese capital is accelerating the reshaping of the global footwear industry

In the global pan-fashion industry, the phenomenon of “everyone gathering firewood with high flames” for fashion brands has become a mainstream trend. Under the usual situation of Western capital at the head, it is increasingly observed that more Chinese capital is joining the camp.

Among them, the matrix of sports shoes and clothing is the main brand. They rely on the unique Chinese market concept and interpretation method to bring a new thinking mode to the globalization, diversification and differentiated operation of the fashion industry.

Internationally, LVMH and Kering Group mainly focus on iconic high-end fashion houses and jewelry families, Richemont Group mainly focuses on hard luxury products such as watches and jewelry, OTB Fashion Group mainly focuses on independent boutique designer brands, and Puig Group, which focuses on boutique fragrances, VF Group, which focuses on outdoor and trendy street brands. The brand relies on the group-based operation mode with strong financial resources to achieve “warming in a group”, and it is being popularized in various industries such as luxury goods, sports, and beauty at the same time.

Chinese companies are extending their capital tentacles to the world

Today, as more and more large local Chinese companies begin to expand their capital to the world, they have gradually become one of the important rule-makers in the global fashion industry. Among them, the matrix of sports shoes and clothing is the main brand. They rely on the unique Chinese market concept and interpretation method to bring a new thinking mode to the globalization, diversification and differentiated operation of the fashion industry.

The Rise of China’s Fashion Capital

Compared with the international sports shoes and clothing brands whose development cycle tends to be longer, most of the domestic commercial sports brands in China were born in the early 1990s. Most of these brands evolved from the foundry industry that emerged in the 1980s – they once served as the service provider of international sports shoes and clothing brands, providing them with shoe-based manufacturing services. When the OEM business in the downstream of the corresponding industry chain is weak in the market, relevant companies must break through to survive in order to survive. It is also at that time that a group of sports brands that interpret the Chinese local sports context are facing adversity. birth.

In the development schedule of nearly 30 years, these sports brands have actually experienced to some extent the hardships and setbacks matched with the transformation of China’s macro economy. In the early days of the brand’s establishment, the lack of scientific research and design strength and the lack of product originality made it impossible to do so. The real situation of passive and low-end product positioning caused by the strategy of “learning”, the development path of local sports shoes and clothing brands representing China’s “new power of domestic products” can be described as frequent trial and error, and finally found a development path with its own characteristics. . Among them, relying on the rapid development of scientific and technological strength accompanied by China’s economic take-off has contributed a lot to it, and more importantly, relying on the huge Chinese market volume and accumulative development of contemporary China’s iconic sports brands, through the activation of funds, Accelerate investment in global corresponding brands, build a brand matrix with a more international perspective, assist international brands in the smoother two-way development of Chinese and foreign markets with Chinese capital, and help local Chinese brands achieve global development with a more international perspective. Shoes and clothing are the carrier to realize the international exchange of culture and business.


Helping international brands achieve local development

The Anta brand established in the early 1990s, after more than 30 years of development, has not only become the top five leading brand in China’s sports shoes and apparel industry, but also relies on strong financial resources to carry out the acquisition strategy of high-quality brands, realizing the group operation. This model, which has developed from a manufacturer serving the brand to the controlling party of the brand, realizes business “feedback”, is very full of the spirit of the contemporary Chinese business era.

Anta Group has successively acquired Kolon Sport, an outdoor brand from South Korea, and Descente, a professional ski sports brand from Japan. Its subsidiaries include Arc’teryx, a high-end outdoor brand in Canada, Salomon, a French outdoor cross-country and running brand, and Wilson, a tennis brand in the United States. Amer Sports, the giant of the supplies holding group, and the Chinese business operation rights of the Italian retro sports brand Fila. This includes almost all types of popular sports under the current national fitness boom: outdoor, skiing, jogging and tennis, and together with its own brands, it has built a more comprehensive sports kingdom.

Japanese ski brand Descente

On the other hand, Xtep, a local Chinese sports brand founded in the early millennium, practiced a far-sighted marketing strategy through the use of the “star effect” at the beginning of its development, and in order to help the brand develop a broader vision of international development, It has successively acquired the American retro jogging brand Saucony, the American classic outdoor sports brand Merrell, the French classic military boots brand Palladium and the American retro tennis sports brand K-Swiss. The addition of these brands further enriches its sports category matrix, and for the acquired brands, relying on the mature retail and logistics system that Xtep Group has cultivated in China for a long time, it can help it achieve a more stable and efficient development goal in the Chinese market. .

French military boots brand Palladium

Compared with other companies, China’s leading sports brand Li Ning has shown a prudent attitude in the group strategy. In 2006, Li Ning Group bought out the operation, production and sales rights of the Italian retro sports brand Kappa in the Chinese market. This year, the largest shareholder of the Li Ning brand purchased Clarks, a British century-old classic shoe brand. With the help of Chinese capital, the Clarks brand, which is in a period of rising trend and culture, is undoubtedly expected to usher in a wave of rapid growth in the Chinese market. At the same time, Clarks, which is mainly based on classic British leather shoes, and the Li Ning brand of sports genes are very different in the footwear brand category, and it is also expected to realize the possibility of creative integration and collaboration after groupization.

Italian sports brand Kappa

British shoe brand Clarks

To strengthen the brand matrix with a group attitude is only the beginning of the development of the leading forces in China’s local sports industry. Some of these brands that have been included under its command are popular brands with excellent recognition and reputation in the international market, while others are potential brands that urgently need more innovative reforms to rejuvenate their vitality in the current market. After being acquired, how China’s sports shoes and apparel capital can mobilize all-round resources to help the newly built international brand matrix achieve co-prosperity in many fields at home and abroad is the ultimate standard to test the strength of China’s national business.

But in any case, the transformation of China’s sports shoes and apparel industry from a local manufacturer to an international brand group model is undoubtedly a “positive energy” that excites related industries around the world. WWD