OXFORDSHIRE, United Kingdom — “We are in this incredible time of transition in the consumer’s behaviour," Tommy Hilfiger chief brand officer Avery Baker told the audience at VOICES, BoF’s new annual gathering for big thinkers in December.
"We felt that the bigger risk was actually to stand still," she said, of the company's decision to align with the consumer calendar and show Fall clothes on the September runway. "But we needed a process to make sure that we had the safest, smoothest landing as possible.”
Baker described how the company shifted its entire operating model, working closely with wholesale vendors to shrink production schedules, sometimes down to an unheard-of six weeks.
Ultimately, the “see now, buy now” approach was a boon to the Hilfiger business. The #TOMMYNOW show at a pier in downtown Manhattan resulted in a 60 percent increase in sell-throughs and a 900 percent jump in website traffic, with 70 percent of inbound hits coming from people who had never previously visited the site.
It’s no surprise, then, that the company is sticking with the in-season model and recently announced plans to stage its next consumer-facing runway show in Los Angeles in February 2017.