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Pop Quiz | Private Equity, Amazon Partners, Tod's Group, Chris Gelinas

How well have you read your BoF this week? Test your knowledge of all of the latest news and analysis from around the world of fashion in our Pop Quiz, which covers private equity, Chris Gelinas, Tod's Group and more.
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By
  • Devi Vallabhaneni

You can find the correct answer and detailed explanation for each question immediately following the question (simply highlight to read), along with all the answers at the end of the quiz. Good luck!

Question 1: 

“Competition makes everyone better, and we have never taken competition lightly”?

a. Yuki Iwashiro of Baron & Baron
b. Claus-Dietrich Lahrs of Hugo Boss
c. Jenny Holloway of Fashion Enter
d. Mark Derbyshire of Holt Renfrew

Answer 1: Choice (d) is correct. "Competition makes everyone better, and we have never taken competition lightly," Mark Derbyshire, president of Holt Renfrew, said in an e-mailed statement. "We're investing in the relationships we've built over 177 years –- staying close to our customers and partners." The changing consumer habits and sudden availability of prime retail real estate are now spurring Saks and Nordstrom to bring their attentive customer service and gourmet dining halls into Canada, a market long dominated by two major homegrown chains: Holt Renfrew and Harry Rosen.

Question 2: According to the Singapore Tourism Board, Chinese visitors spent S$800 million ($640 million) in the first quarter, of which approximately ___ percent was on shopping.

a. 15
b. 25
c. 50
d. 67

Answer 2: Choice (c) is correct. Singapore Tourism Board data show Chinese visitors spent S$800 million ($640 million) in Singapore in the first quarter, of which almost half was on shopping.

Question 3: In Prada's most recent financial report, sales fell by 1 percent in _____ and increased by 19 percent in _____ and 14 percent in _____.

a. USA, Europe, China
b. Europe, Japan, USA
c. Singapore, Brazil, China
d. China, Russia, Brazil

Answer 3: Choice (b) is correct. As reported by Prada, sales fell 1 percent in Europe led by a fall in tourism with poor economic environment affecting domestic demand. Sales increased 19 percent in Japan and 14 percent in the Americas.

Question 4: One-time owner of Valentino, private-equity firm Permira Advisers is considering acquiring a stake in ____ and selling its stake in ____.

a. Roberto Cavalli, Hugo Boss
b. Stella Jean, Giorgio Armani
c. Aquazzura, Missoni
d. Ermanno Scervino, Versace

Answer 4: Choice (a) is correct. Over the weekend, Bloomberg reported that private equity firm Permira Advisers LLP was considering selling its 56 percent stake in German menswear giant Hugo Boss. Simultaneously, the firm is said to be re-opening talks to acquire a stake in the Italian fashion label Roberto Cavalli after dropping out of negotiations earlier in the year.

Question 5: Which of the following statements is true about Chris Gelinas?

a. has a degree in architecture
b. is particularly interested in technical fabric and already develops 50 percent of the material in-house
c. has interned at LVMH
d. is now focused on quickly opening wholesale accounts

Answer 5: Choice (b) is correct. Chris Gelinas is particularly interested in technical fabric and already develops 50 percent of the material he uses in-house. A particular point of pride is a spacer fabric, which he developed in Germany and then fashioned into a curved-hem gown for Fall 2014. The fabric offers the sculpted look of neoprene, but is lighter weight and drapes more easily. "I think there are already enough fast things out there," Gelinas says of his steady approach.

Question 6: Arguments for reshoring garment manufacturing include:

a. product design decisions made closer to sale improve margins and speed to market
b. every eight weeks of time saved generates a 2 percent margin improvement
c. approximately 60 percent of garments are sold at a discount, indicating manufacturers are making too much of the wrong item
d. all of the above

Answer 6: Choice (d) is correct. A recent UK apparel supply chain study by Kurt Salmon has shown that decisions on fabric, colour, silhouette and quantity made closer to sale improve margins and speed to market. Indeed, the study found that every eight weeks of time saved generates a two per cent improvement on retained margin, a real commercial reason to source from local manufacturers whenever possible. Furthermore, some 60 percent of the garments are sold at discount, which means companies are making too much of the wrong thing. Local sourcing allows retailers to be more responsive to actual customer buying behaviour. Styles can even be adapted in-season and delivered to stores while consumers still want to buy them. And, at the end of the day, smaller runs of garments that sell at full-price are better than volume runs of garments that have to be sold at discount.

Question 7: Tod's Group includes brands such as ____.

a. Tod's, Hogan, and Fratelli Rossetti
b. Hogan, Roger Vivier, and Bally
c. Hogan, Fay, and Roger Vivier
d. Fay, Bally, and Fratelli Rossetti

Answer 7: Choice (c) is correct. Tod's Group includes Tod's, Hogan, Fay and Roger Vivier.

Question 8: According to a recent study by L2, which brand is strategically working with Amazon?

a. Burberry
b. Louis Vuitton
c. Balenciaga
d. Ralph Lauren

Answer 8: Choice (a) is correct. Burberry began selling to Amazon and featuring its products on Amazon's Luxury Beauty store last year, particularly making its line of fragrances available on the site, according to L2. In exchange, third parties are restricted from listing certain Burberry goods on Amazon, L2 said. "Burberry has strategically traded the official distribution of a limited number of its SKUs in exchange for Amazon cleaning up third-party distribution of other Burberry products," L2 researchers wrote.

Question 9:  What are the lessons private equity firms can apply to fashion industry investments?

a. Be patient
b. Always respect creativity
c. Invest in extensive due diligence
d. Choice a and b only

Answer 9: Choice (d) is correct. The three lessons include (1) Always respect creativity, (2) Be prepared to invest significant sums, and (3) Be patient.

Question 10: All of the following are products delivered by WGSN except ___.

a. Denimhead
b. LS:N Global
c. INstock
d. Homebuildlife

Answer 10: Choice (b) is correct. LS:N Global is a product launched by The Future Laboratory, not WGSN.

Answer Key: 1. (d) 2. (c) 3. (b) 4. (a) 5. (b) 6. (d) 7. (c) 8. (a) 9. (d) 10. (b)

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