Physical stores still necessary to secure New Look’s future despite boohoo acquisition rumours

Following the news that the boohoo group is reportedly considering an offer for New Look;

Chloe Collins, Senior Apparel Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers her view on the situation:

“New Look has had a troublesome few years, with its share of the UK clothing market steadily declining from 2.6% in 2014 to 1.9% in 2019. It has failed to strike the right balance within its ranges, moving away from young, trend-led styles towards products that have broad appeal, but now lack excitement for any age group, and its online offer falls behind rivals when it comes to fulfilment options, website functionality and digital marketing.

“A deal between the boohoo group and New Look would likely result in the closure of all of its stores, and though New Look’s store network with over 400 locations is much too large, it should retain some physical presence as offline sales are still forecast to account for 58.7% of UK clothing and footwear spend in 2020. Whatever the outcome of the proposed CVA, any continuation of the New Look brand should focus on identifying its target customer, right sizing its estate to no more than 200 stores in key locations, and plunging investments into its online channel.”

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