INTRODUCTION This product proposal report aims to present MIH Jeans’ A/W 18/19 collection in denim product category. Supported by its current business strategy, analysis of target market, as well as, relevant macro and micro trends, the products proposed will evidence a commercially viable fashion range that reflects MIH Jeans’ brand DNA. The brand’s sales performance, previous and current collection will also be analysed to ensure that the products offered will be able to meet consumers satisfaction which might result in increased sales and profitability. ABOUT M.I.H JEANS MIH Jeans is a premium fashion label based in London. The brand was initially founded by Tony O’Gorman in 1967, named as ‘Made in Heaven’. Later, in 2005, the brand was relaunched by Chloe Lonsdale as MIH Jeans (MIH Jeans, 2018). Well known for its worn-in, 1970s vintage style jeans, the brand’s essence and aesthetic are greatly influenced by the fashion during this period (Cunnigham, 2016). Having 40 years of experience and expertise in the denim industry, allows the brand to distinguish itself from the competition (Cunnigham, 2016). With this knowledge, the brand strives to deliver the perfectly tailored jeans with effortless yet elegant clothes that will elevate one’s everyday dressing (Gouveia, 2017). >>> Insert Brand Prism Brand’s Strategy Design Inspiration MIH Jeans’ collection is mostly influenced by London’s culture. As stated by Chloe Lonsdale during an interview, Chloe and her design team always look back to the British style in the 70s, 80s, and 90s, which is then modernised to fit preferences of the modern society (Christie, 2016). The brand previous collection, ‘Golborne Road’ for example, is influenced by West London’s diverse heritage and its iconic street culture in the 90s (MIH Jeans, 2018). Merchandise Mix Analysis MIH Jeans offers products ranging from tops, bottoms (jeans, trousers, shorts, and skirts), singles (dresses and jumpsuit), outerwear, and knitwear. Among the brand’s product categories, jean is categorised as the brand’s cash cow due to its ability in providing positive cash flows (Henderson, 1970). This is shown from the brand’s merchandise mix, in which jeans account almost 50% of the products offered. Furthermore, based on the observation, it shows that most consumers are most likely to be seen wearing jeans compared to other product categories. Also, as stated by Sophie Alexandra during an interview (refer to Appendix), she mostly purchases jeans compared to other product categories when shopping at MIH Jeans. This is due to its fit and comfort, as well as, its unique style and washes (Alexandra, 2017). >>> insert Boston Growth Matrix On the other hand, denim jacket accounts the least amount among the products offered, with only one style of jacket during each season. This indicates that denim jacket might be the least preferred product category. Additionally, since denim jacket is usually versatile, people tend to own limited amount of jacket in their wardrobe. As the result, they are less likely to purchase jacket on a regular basis. Current Offer Product Handwriting: Silhouette MIH Jeans offers jeans in 5 different styles which include flare, straight, slim, skinny, and boyfriend. Among these styles, flare silhouette remains as the most best-selling style (MIH Jeans, 2018). As for denim jacket, it usually comes in straight cut silhouette. Number of SKU Flare = 9 SKU Straight = 8 SKU Slim = 9 SKU Skinny = 6 SKU Boyfriend = 7 SKU Washes and Treatment The brand is well known for its vintage wash which is achieved through several methods such as: bleach wash, sand wash, stone wash and tinted wash. Treatments, such as whiskering and grinding effects are usually subtle and minimal to maintain the brand’s minimalist aesthetic. Bleach Wash = 5 SKU Sand Wash = 5 SKU Stone Wash = 17 SKU Tinted Wash = 12 SKU (mostly in black colours) Details The brand’s design elements, such as embroideries and beads are also kept minimal in order to keep in line with the brand’s minimalist aesthetic. In the current products offered for example, only three products are complimented with embroideries and beads detailing. However, the brand provides personalisation services, in which customers could add elements, such as initial embroideries, additional patches and tassels. Size Sales Performance MIH Jeans has consistently shown a steady performance which is indicated by the constant increase in the brand’s profitability, from £ 326,514 in 2012 to £ 406,208 in 2016 (Company Check, 2016). Best Seller Products Worst Seller Products Target Market Demographics Based on the primary research that is gained through various methodologies, such as online survey, interview, and observation (refer to Appendix) from MIH Jeans’ Instagram account, it can be seen that the brand’s target market is typically Generation Y female, 25 to 35 years of age. They are generally the young professionals who have a high disposable income to afford premium products. This is further supported by the observation from MIH Jeans’ Instagram account which shows that the majority of the brand’s customers also purchase products from affordable luxury and high-end brands, such as Chanel, Fendi, Louis Vuitton, etc. (Figure _____). Psychographic As per Diffusion of Innovation Theory (Rogers, 1962), MIH Jeans’ target consumer is categorised as the ‘Early Majority’. They are a fashion-conscious group of consumers; however, they tend to adopt the trend after they have seen the emergence of the trend within the society (Posner, 2011). >>> insert figure diffusion As the fashion-conscious consumer, they are highly active in various social media platforms. This is supported by the observation which shows that the majority of MIH Jeans’ consumers tend to post pictures online on a regular basis. Therefore, to create the social media contents, they generally spend their leisure time involving in activities such as travelling, taking photograph or hanging out with a group of friends (Figure ____). Furthermore, their style of clothing can be described as simple, yet chic, with a touch of 70s aesthetic. >>> Insert customer profile Macro and Micro Environment Macroenvironment Technology and Environmental Factors The denim industry is regarded as one of the industries that has the worst environmental and ethical footprints. In order to produce a pair of jeans, approximately 70 litres of water and a large number of hazardous chemicals are required (Euromonitor, 2017). With the rising demand for denim which forces retailer to produce more, this could put the environment at risk. To address this issue, the incorporation of eco-friendly denim could be taken into consideration for denim brands. This is also supported by the technological advancement which allows the process to be more economical and efficient. The recent technology, for examples, combine air and laser technology to produce an eco-friendly jean that only require 2 litres of water in the manufacturing process (Stone, 2017). Other innovations include the use of ozone technology that help to reduce water and chemical used. The idea of sustainability could potentially be applied to MIH Jeans’ product concept in the future. By incorporating this, the brand has a potential to reach a wider target consumer who demand for eco-friendly products. Microenvironment Consumer Behaviour The millennial generation is currently the largest population worldwide, making up 27% of the global population (Kearney, 2016). As the growing population who currently has the highest spending power, the millennial generation is a beneficial market to penetrate. Therefore, an understanding of their lifestyle and behaviour will enable brand to offer products that meet their expectations and preferences. In the current fast-paced and busy environment, there is the emergence of spending time on outdoor activities among the millennial generation (Walenga, 2017). In fact, a report by North America Camping shows that out of 75 million participants, 38% of which are the millennials. When questioned on the reason why they involved in such activities, the majority stated that outdoors activities allow them to be physically active and spend more time with friends and family in the midst of their busy lifestyle (The Cabin.net, 2017). Furthermore, participating in outdoor activities help to reduce stress and improves emotional well-being (Walenga, 2017). In addition, as this generation is highly active on social media platforms, participating in outdoor activities allow them to have a unique experience which they can share through various social media platforms. Competitors There are 2 brands that are identified to pose a threat to MIH Jeans, which include Donna Ida and Current/Elliot. Donna Ida – Local Donna Ida is a London-based premium denim brand with its collection mostly inspired by the Australian culture. The brand embraces simplicity in dressing and aims to provide denim pieces that are cool and versatile yet anchor the modern wardrobe. Current offer: Current / Elliot Current / Elliot is an American based premium denim brand, which collection is mostly influenced by the American heritage. The brand had a vision of creating a denim that is rich in stories, unique and treasured (Current/Elliot, 2017). SWOT Analysis Strength Distinct USP, being a premium denim brand with strong British influence, which currently has limited competitors in the UK market. Fine quality materials that are sourced from countries such as Japan. Japanese denim is known for its premium construction and skilled, artisanal craft required to make it (Cardiner, 2012). Having a certified manufacturers and raw materials in the supply chain (MIH Jeans, 2018). The use of selvedge denim which elevates its premium image. Currently, there are only limited manufacturer that could produce selvedge denim, also, the production costs are tend to be more expensive (Cardiner, 2012). Weakness Since MIH Jeans volume selling price falls between £201.00 to £250.00, which is higher compared to its competitors, the brand’s target market might be a niche. Lack of marketing strategies which result in lack of brand visibility in the global market. Opportunities Future technology may create advanced manufacturing technologies which allows a more sustainable and cost-efficient production. Changes in consumer lifestyle may lead to higher spending in fashion Its product simplicity and versatility have a higher chance to be generally accepted, thus, it opens an opportunity for market expansion. Threat Political and Economic instability may put the brand at high risk · The emergence of new brands that offer the same product category at a lower price might increase a competition in the market. · An established brand that diversifies into a new sector might pose a threat to the brand. TREND FORECAST Concept Camping has always become the part of British culture (Pannell, 2018). It was first introduced by a British man, Thomas Hiran Holding and was popularised in the UK on the River Thames. Today, camping has started to gain back its popularity, with a lot of millennials start to enjoy outdoor activities (Walenga, 2017). Inspired by this nostalgic activity, MIH Jeans’ A/W 18/19 collection will be adopting the aesthetic elements of 1970s retro camping and will be modernised, whilst reflecting to MIH Jeans’ brand DNA. This season, MIH Jeans will be focusing on jeans and jacket product category. Since jeans are categorised as the cash cow, jeans will be carried in the larger quantity than jacket (Further explanation on merchandise mix analysis). Although denim jacket is the least purchased product, a report by WGSN (2017) shows that for A/W 18/19, jeans and jacket will be the product category that people are most likely to purchase. This is also supported by the emerging trend in the market, such as double denim trend (Figure___). >>> MOOD BOARD A/W 18/19 Key Trends Silhouette: Jacket Comfortable clothing is a must when it comes to camping. Therefore, A/W 18/19 denim jacket collection will feature an oversized silhouette, giving a cosy yet fashionable look. Adopted from the oversized denim trucker jacket (WGSN, 2017), the jacket will feature details such as oversized sleeves and dropped shoulder, creating a low-slung style. Supported by the online survey, in which consumers tend to get inspiration from celebrities or social media influencers, this oversized denim has a potential to be a viable product range. This is due to its popularity among celebrities, such as Kylie Jenner which has been seen wearing this jacket throughout its Instagram account (Figure ____). Jeans For A/W 18/19 collection, the jeans silhouette will be loose-fit silhouette. As the demand for vintage style increased, looser silhouette will be much preferred by consumers (WGSN, 2017). There are two styles offered, which include cropped cut jeans and flare jeans. Crop cut jeans remain as the key look for A/W’ 18/19/ This style are featured on catwalks and can be seen within street style. This style is important to be carried as it is considered as fad, in which product is a short-term fashion, yet, it is able to generate high sales (Goworek, 2001). Flare jeans, on the other hand, are the best-seller products at MIH Jeans. Thus, this product needs to be carried to generate sales. Washes and Colours With the emerging trends in coloured denim, the colour range for A/W 18/19 will be classified into 2 main colours, such as seasonal colours and core colour. Core colours include range of MIH Jeans authentic wash, such as shades of blue sand washed and stonewashed denim and black tinted denim. Referenced from WGSN (2017), the seasonal colours will include vibrant orange, tobacco & chocolate, and warm neutrals (WGSN, 2018). Two-tone colour jeans with a contrasting hemline will also be the highlight for the A/W 18/19. Treatments In order to maintain the brand’s design aesthetic, which is minimalist, there will only be a subtle whiskering and grinding effect. Fabrics Since it is an Autumn Winter collection that is catered to the UK market, the denim weight that will be used for this collection will be a heavier weight denim, range from 12 to 14 oz. ThR Merchandise mix Analysis The proposed collection will consist of 6 jeans and 2 jac PROFITABILITY Conclusion Having an understanding List of Figures Figure Durst, Manon, 2017. Cold Sun, Freezing in #Paris bu in my #Bally shoes. Instagram. Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/Ba6RoNqDsOU/?hl=en-by=manondurst Accessed 11 January 2018. Figure Ecedogus, 2018. Floral Saturaday with @Fendi @Mihjeans. Instagram. Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bec5DoegUBP/?hl=en-by=ecedogus.lfb Accessed 17 January 2018. Figure Alexandra, Sophie, 2017. Omg guys, I just had a life changing burger, check my instastories for where. Instagram. Available at: https://www.instagram.com/p/BcDVQxTFomI/?hl=en-by=silkandstrands Accessed 11 January 2018. List of References Websites CompanyCheck, 2017. MIH Jeans Limited Credit Report Online. CompanyCheck. Available at: https://companycheck.co.uk/company/06596106/MIH-JEANS-LIMITED/companies-house-data Accessed 11 January 2018. Cunningham, Eric, 2016. Talking Jeans with One of The World’s Biggest Denim Designers Online. Refinery29. Available at: http://www.refinery29.uk/mih-jeans-founder-chloe-lonsdale-interview Accessed 11 January 2018. Gouveia, Alexandria, 2017. Fashion Interview: Chloe Lonsdale of MIH Jeans Online. Emirates Woman. Available at: http://emirateswoman.com/fashion-interview-chloe-lonsdale-of-mih-jeans/ Accessed 11 January 2018. M.I.H Jeans, 2018. About Online. Available at: https://www.mih-jeans.com/about Accessed 11 January 2018. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/global-denim-market-2017-2023-300570824.html https://www.technavio.com/report/global-apparel-and-textile-global-premium-denim-jeans-market-2016-2020 https://fashionunited.uk/news/fashion/lindex-launches-most-eco-friendly-denim-range/2017110226563 http://www.outdoorbookclub.org/blog/4-things-you-didnt-know-about-outdoorsy-millennials https://www.highsnobiety.com/2012/11/16/japanese-denim-a-history-of-the-worlds-best-denim/ Books Posner, Harriet, 2011. Marketing Fashion. London: Laurence King. PDFs Trend Analytics, 2017. The Denim Market’s Next Wave Online. Available at: http://docs.trendalytics.co/whitepapers/Trendalytics_denim_report.pdf Accessed 11 January 2018. Bibliography Books Bojer, Thomas. S., 2017. Blue Blooded : Denim Hunters and Jeans Culture. Germany: Gestalten. Carr, H. and Pomeroy, J., 1992. Fashion Design and Product Development. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publication. Frings, G.S., 2017. Fashion : from concept to consumer. 9th Edition. USA: Pearson Education, Inc. Goworek, Helen, 2001. Fashion Buying. Oxford: Blackwell Science Ltd. Rosenau, J.A. and Wilson, D.L., 2014. Apparel Merchandising : The Line Starts Here. 3rd Edition. New York: Bloomsbury Publishing Inc. Shaw, D. and Koumbis, D.,2017. Fashion Buying: From Trend Forecasting to Shop Floor. 2nd Edition. London: Bloomsbury Visual Arts. PDFs Cassidy, T.D., and Bennett, H.R., 2012. The Rise of Vintage Fashion and the Vintage Consumer Online. Available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.2752/175693812X13403765252424?needAccess=true Accessed 11 January 2018. Wgsn https://www.wgsn.com/content/board_viewer/#/75805/page/9 Consumer Research Questionnaire Which age groups do you belong to? <15 – 0% 15-25 – 29% 26-35 – 54% 36-45 – 17% 46-55 – 0% >55 – 0% How often do you wear denim? Everyday 4-5 times a week 2 times a week Rarely Never For what purpose do you usually wear denim? Travelling / Leisure activities Going to work Going to college Others (Please specify) How do you usually spend your leisure time? Indoor activities, such as watching movies, hanging out at cafes or restaurants, shopping, etc. Outdoor activities, such as road trips, camping, etc. Among the denim product categories below, which styles are you most likely to purchase? (Photo Credits: M.I.H. Jeans, https://www.mih-jeans.com) Tops Jeans Outerwear Dresses Jumpsuit What are the factors that you consider when purchasing a pair of jeans? Fit Comfort Price Style Brand Sustainability and ethical consideration (eco-friendly material, ethical sourcing and manufacturing, etc.) Where or who do you get your fashion inspiration from? Social media influencers (Photo Credits: Jenn im, instagram: @imjenim) Celebrities Street style trends (Photo Credits: Kendall Jenner) Fashion Show (Photo Credits: Adam Selman, Spring Summer 2018) Others Among the denim washes below, what type of washes do you prefer? (Photo Credits: M.I.H. Jeans, https://www.mih-jeans.com) Dark-washed denim Light-washed denim Black denim Coloured denim Which details/ embellishment do you prefer on denim? No details / embellishment Raw-edge denim Embroidered Denim Ripped Denim Studs / Beads From the images below, which styles would you wear? (Picture Credits: WGSN) Loose-fit Jeans Fitted Jeans Oversized Jacket Fitted Jacket Interview The interview was conducted through a casual chat with the interviewee via Instagram’s direct message. Name: Sophie Alexandra Age: 29 Country of Origin: London Instagram Account: @silkandstrands Interview Question: CL: Hello, I am student from Nottingham Trent University and I am currently working on a project, to launch new products for upcoming season. I just found out your profile and thought you will be the perfect person to interview. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions? SA: Sure, I don’t mind. CL: Thank you! But first thing first, can I get your name please? SA: My name is Sophie Alexandra. You can call me Sophie. CL: Okay Sophie, if you don’t mind may I know what is your current occupation? And what is your age? SA: I am currently 29 years old. Well, I currently focusing on blogging, so I should say, a fashion blogger, perhaps? CL: Moving on, could you describe your style of clothing? SA: I don’t know if I have a particular style that I can describe but I’m drawn to a lot of 70s silhouette. I am obsessed with jeans and I think I have over 30 pairs. CL: Where do you usually purchase your jeans? SA: MIH Jeans, Topshop, What 2 factors that you usually consider when purchasing a pair of jeans? How do you usually spend your spare time? Can you name 2 of your favourite denim brands? What is the reason of you purchasing denim from mih jeans? Are you familiar with the brand such as current/Elliot and donna ida? If yes, could you mention which brand you are more likely to purchase ? Mih/current/Elliot or donna ida? Do you consider yourself as environmentalist? Would you purchase a denim that are made of eco-friendly material? And what do you think a pair of eco-friendly jeans should be priced at? What recommendation could you make for mih jeans in terms of their product? Furthermore, their motivation of buying is triggered by the ‘esteem’ needs (Maslow, 1943). They have a strong desire for reputaion and respect from others, therefore, to fulfill this needs, they tend to choose status brands or clothing to signify importance or position. As stated by Chloe Lonsdale during an interview, MIH Jeans’ woman style of clothing is a mix of designer and vintage (Christie, 2016). This is also further supported by observation from MIH Jeans’ Instagram account (Figure ___) which shows that the majority of MIH Jeans’ consumers tend to purchase from vintage and affordable luxury to high-end brands, such as Fendi, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, etc.