The Success of Primark

Primark is opening in Brooklyn. That one sentence brings me so much joy. Primark (or Penneys as we Irish know it) has always been close to my heart, especially when I worked in their flagship store in Dublin for three years, as well as a stint in their Paris store.

While the Brooklyn store is still very far from the city (I live in Brooklyn and it will still take me over an hour to get there) I will, of course, be making a trip or many many trips.

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When Primark first moved to the US it didn’t have immediate success. At the time a strong dollar and lack of brand awareness meant they went through a slightly bumpy period. But they held strong and are now beginning to see a brighter future in the US market.

These days a falling US dollar and better market focused buying have set Primark on course for higher profits as expansion continues both at home and abroad. Its first store in Brooklyn will open in the next year. The retailer is following its usual pattern in the US and opening in shopping malls outside of the major cities- although rumour has it Primark has been looking at large outlets in Manhattan of late…

The fashion chain now has 350 stores with sales in the UK market growing 8 percent this year so far, compared with the year previous. The retailer just announced they are opening the world’s largest ever retail store in Birmingham at Christmas. The store will have over 900 employees alone.  Their stores have evolved over the years and they are losing the look of a ‘discount store’ with boutique features and upscale visual merchandising,

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While other brands such as New Look and H&M are struggling and feeling competition against online brands. Primark is one of few in the market without a digital presence meaning they must compete with both offline and online sales from other retailers. What makes Primark special is not only affordability but a skilled global buying team with their finger on the latest trends. Their homeware section, in particular, has gone from strength to strength.

Eventually, I wonder if they will have to have a digital presence to compete globally but for now, they are on track for continued success.

Thanks hun, penneys xo

 

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