Daily Links

1. Consumer companies seeking IPOs will enter busy market in 2021: Buoyed by hope the pandemic could be ending soon, Biden’s election to the White House and low interest rates, investor enthusiasm soared in 2020. That enthusiasm helped drive up public valuations that made it cheaper to raise capital on the public market compared to the private one, experts say. – Read More on S&P Global

2. Tiffany posts record holiday sales on online, China demand: The company, which will soon be bought by France’s LVMH, said its overall preliminary net sales rose about 2% for the period Nov. 1 through Dec. 31, compared with a year earlier, with e-commerce sales surging more than 80% during the period. – Read More on CNBC

3. RELATED READ: As Tiffany & Co. Q3 Sales Spike, What About LVMH’s Material Adverse Effect Claim?The sizable uptick in sales is particularly interesting given that just two months ago, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton sought to pull out of its $16 billion-plus deal to acquire Tiffany & Co., pointing to the way in which the stalwart jewelry company’s “management and its Board of Directors … has handl[ed] the [COVID] crisis,” and arguing that Tiffany’s business was thoroughly “devastated” by the global health pandemic. – Read More on TFL

4. In other Tiffany news … LVMH gives Tiffany a makeover, promotes Arnault scion after $16 billion deal: LVMH has installed new execs for Tiffany, with LV chairman and CEO Michael Burke taking on the chairman role, 28-year old Alexandre Arnault is the new EVP in charge of product and communication, and Anthony Ledru will replace Alessandro Bogliolo as CEO. – Read More on Reuters

5. Luxury Goods Poised For Comeback In Asia; Digital Sales Gain Traction: Financial News said South Korean consumers unable to take summer vacations due to COVID-19’s travel restrictions often used their unspent money to buy luxury goods instead. The publication said South Korea’s three top department store chains all reported double-digit year-on-year growth in luxury sales. – Read More on PYMNTS

6. These brands will pay you to wear their clothes: For decades, fashion brands have built their businesses on convincing customers to buy new clothes, racking up profits with each new purchase. But in new twist, fashion brands are persuading their customers to wear clothes they already own. Some are even paying them to do so. – Read More on Fast Co.

7. Wells Fargo Banker Reflects on a Year of Retail Disruption: Some shaky retailers could have avoided bankruptcy in 2020 if not for the pandemic; hedge funds played a bigger role than in the past; and liquidation sales turned out better than expected, despite pandemic lockdowns. – Read More on the WSJ

1. Prada Recovers From Worst of Covid-Induced Slump, Thanks to Asia: Prada SpA returned to profit in the second half of 2020 amid a recovery in Asia. The fashion brand has been focused on reducing its sales via wholesalers in order to better control handbag pricing of handbags under its flagship and Miu Miu labels. Its own outlets now account for 90% of overall sales, while the company is also ending seasonal discounts in a bid to boost its aura of exclusivity and profit margins. – Read More on Bloomberg

2. RELATED READ: Prada CEO Says Brand Will “Stop Doing Markdowns” Beginning … Now. With sales on their way out of Prada’s 600-plus stores worldwide, one of the immediate questions becomes: what is Prada to do with its unsold wares? The products will likely shift to different stores, ones that are not listed on the fashion brand’s website alongside its marquee outposts, but instead, come on the form of a smattering of outlets that Prada maintains in different locales across the globe, from its famous SPACE site on the outskirts of Florence to its domestic outpost at New York’s Woodbury Commons. – Read More on TFL

3. Brexit Forces Bankers to Shift Trading of European Stocks Out of London: The fallout from Britain’s split from the European Union showed itself on the first trading day of the year as a big chunk of dealing volume in EU stocks moved from London to venues located in Amsterdam, Paris and the Continent’s other financial centers. – Read More on the WSJ

4. The exhilarating world of post-pandemic shopping: “Experiential retail had been a growing trend, but the pandemic will turbocharge it. Stakes will be higher for brick-and-mortar stores now, because consumers can buy so many products online.” – Read More on Fast Co.

5. Amazon Banned From Using AWS Logo in China Trademark Ruling: Amazon can’t use its cloud-computing business’s AWS logo in China, a Beijing court ruled, the latest headache for a company that has already been hampered by Chinese regulations and rivals. – Read More on the WSJ

6. Fashion designer Pierre Cardin remembered in China as a pioneer who inspired brands like L’Oreal to follow in his footsteps: The late Frenchman was the first Western couturier to stage a fashion show in China in 1979, when most in the country still dressed in drab blue and green.” – Read More on SCMP

1. The State of Retail Bankruptcies in 2021: The coronavirus pandemic appeared to be the final straw for a number of retailers that filed for bankruptcy in 2020. More brands, suppliers and landlords may wind up in bankruptcy as the much anticipated “return to normal” depends on vaccine distribution. – Read More on WWD

2. Stock Market Rally in 2020 Easily Outpaced Luxury Goods, Hedge Funds: The S&P 500 index, which tracks the U.S. stock market broadly, rose over 15 percent last year and the tech-heavy Nasdaq index surged over 43 percent. That is significantly better than the performance of many alternative investments. – Read More on the WSJ

3. Next up for retailers: A big wave of gift returns. As shoppers were tucking their final Christmas presents under the tree, U.S. retailers were bracing for a record-setting flood of returns of online gifts bought during the deadly surge in coronavirus cases. Returns are set to swell this year. Shoppers seeking to avoid contagion shifted from stores to online – where return rates are historically higher. – Read More on Reuters

4. COVID-19 upended fashion trends, but will they last? History offers some clues. Part of the reason casualness is likely here to stay is because it’s an extension of an earlier trend. We can see this in what’s deemed appropriate to wear to the office, from suits in the ’90s, to khakis in the 2000s. In recent years, some workers have felt comfortable wearing hoodies and joggers to work. – Read More on Fast Co.

5. Why Fashion Retailing Will Have A Slow Recovery: During our confinement demand for fashion will not return to pre-pandemic levels in the foreseeable future. Unemployment hurts. Retailers must double down on performing categories such as fashion for the home. – Read More on Forbes

1. The 6 wildest ways we shopped in 2020: Achim Berg, who leads McKinsey’s fashion research, says WhatsApp has been a popular platform for luxury brands trying to connect with customers. It’s designed to replicate the luxury experience of the past, where a boutique would call a client directly when a new product came in the store he or she would like. – Read More on Fast Co.

2. Future of luxury: A look at the year ahead. One thing that won’t go away this year? Logos. “In previous crises, logos were a no-no, it was inappropriate. Right now, even with high unemployment, it is the iconic, recognizable products that are outperforming versus pre-Covid. There is no guilt factor — it’s more of a ‘I’ve survived this, it’s ok to reward myself, I’m worth it’.” – Read More on the FT

3. Gorpcore: How Arc’teryx Parkas and Salomon Hiking Boots Became High Fashion: The term “gorpcore”—coined by New York Magazine’s style site the Cut in 2017—has been bubbling up in men’s fashion for a few years. It emerged as an outdoor-specific offshoot of the 2010s’ normcore trend, which recontextualized humble, pragmatic clothes as lust-worthy fashion. – Read More on the WSJ

4. How Did Business’s Role in Society Change in 2020? In addition to spontaneous marches around the world, nearly every organization felt a need to say or do something to support Black Lives Matter and show commitment to justice. Microsoft pledged to buy 500 megawatts of solar energy from and for minority communities and retailer Sephora will dedicate 15% of its shelf space to Black-owned brands. – Read More on HBR

5. How Authentic Brands Group has positioned itself as the 2020 repo man: Nearly 30 retailers have filed for bankruptcy so far in 2020, closing thousands of a stores. But a few of those businesses have been acquired by consortia like Authentic Brands Group. Most recently ABG has purchased Brooks Brothers, Forever 21 and Barneys — all ailing for their own set of reasons. – Read More on Modern Retail 

1. The shelter-at-home era poses a fundamental challenge to fashion: That term “discretionary” is key. Clothing may be a basic necessity, but our purchases of it are largely detached from need. The pandemic quickly revealed where it ranks on shoppers’ list of priorities. Clothing sales dropped, while furniture and home improvement products saw sales jump. – Read More on Quartz

2. How 2020 killed the Instagram brand: Pastels and the ubiquitous Sans Serif font have been replaced by bright colors and oversized lettering, while startups are centering their social media centering their social media strategy around busting taboos or reaching customers that have historically been overlooked. – Read More on Modern Retail

3. The 10 biggest retail bankruptcies of 2020: More than three dozen retailers, including the nation’s oldest department store chain, filed for bankruptcy this year, marking an 11-year high. Pre-pandemic, several of these retailers were already teetering on the brink of survival. But the Covid health crisis pummeled the industry. – Read More on CNBC

4. Stars align for luxury circular economy: Before the pandemic, second-hand luxury goods sales were already growing three times faster than the primary market and were expected to double to 41 billion euros between 2018 and 2023, says UBS. But the potential stock of goods is much larger. – Read More on Reuters

5. Rare Small-Business Win in Insurer Lawsuits Keeps Hope Alive for Payouts: In hundreds of lawsuits across the country, mostly small businesses have sued their property-insurance companies for refusing to pay out “business interruption” claims tied to the pandemic. Many insurers say their policies contain clear language excluding virus-related claims, while most claims also haven’t met their policies’ criteria. – Read More on the WSJ

6. German-based Mytheresa joins growing list of e-commerce retailers going public: In fiscal 2020, Mytheresa surpassed 486,000 active users, with €449.5 million in net sales (US$550.7 million) shipped across 133 countries. Average order value in fiscal 2020 was €600 (about $735), down from €614​ in 2019 and €632 in 2018. – Read More on Market Watch