As far as Spanish fashion giants go Mango has very much languished in the shadows of Zara owner Inditex which is the undoubted leader of international fashion retail.
Mango has not had quite the same success here as Zara has with its offer neither cheaper or more on trend. It is in the very difficult and competitive middle market in the UK with styles that are slightly more European for the English fashion taste.
This week however it signalled that it would be really pushing the accelerator on international expansion – with a store planned open every day, and between 200 and 300 a year in China alone.
Asia is very much on the radar for all of the global fashion players and Inditex has slowed its Western European expansion were like-for-like sales growth is harder to achieve in favour of the fast growing emerging economies such as China and India.
For Mango to succeed to the same level of Inditex and the likes of H&M it need to try more diversification. It has been improving its image recently with an improved menswear offer and a striking ad campaign using Hollywood star Scarlett Johansson.
However while Inditex has widened its customer base with Massimo Dutti and Bershka and H&M’s Cos gaining momentum Mango has continued to play it safe. To be a real threat in the UK to its European counterparts it may need to innovate further.
For the UK market it is extremely difficult for it to compete with the likes of Zara or Topshop on price and at the higher end Whistles and Reiss are continuing to gain in popularity with consumers and receive strong editorial coverage.
Who wins the war in the emerging markets will be the most interesting battle however. These markets have so much growth still to come and an increasing fashion hungry population that well exceeds to market sizes in Europe.
With the levels of investment planned in China and India the likes of Mango and Inditex must have a great deal of faith in their future there and that their offers will prove popular.
With Gap’s sales recovering on the whole and Fast Retailing continuing its ambitious growth plans there are many global fashion players fighting for growth wherever they can there is an tough worldwide battle a foot in fashion.
Gap, Zara and H&M will also expand their online offering in the next month and it will be interesting to see how the sites look and operate and which will win the hearts and hard earned cash of the UK shopper.
Mango has an online offer but only via third party sites such as Asos so again it will need to step up here too and make sure it keeps pace with its rivals.
It may never reach the hefty heights of Inditex but has serious ambitions to be a very credible second.