Daily Links

1. Boohoo’s 45 percent rise in sales shows that scandal won’t stop fast fashion shoppers: More than £1 billion was wiped off of the fast fashion group Boohoo’s share value back in July, after allegations emerged that it had connections with ‘sweatshop’ factories in Leicester. Almost overnight it plummeted, from a June valuation of £5.2 billion, which was more than rivals Marks & Spencer and ASOS combined. – Read More on the Telegraph

2. H&M to close hundreds of stores as online shift accelerates: H&M has been shutting more stores and opening fewer over the past couple of years as it adapts to the online shift that is driving more competition. The retailer said earlier this year its net number of stores would decline already in 2020. – Read More on CNBC

3. Digital fashion is no more appealing than digital life: This year, the moaners have been silenced – the pandemic cancelled what is already being described as the “traditional” fashion show. It has now become impossible to contemplate spending 20 minutes assessing fancy clothes while sitting shoulder-to-shoulder with hundreds of fellow fashion victims (a breed prone to aerosol-generating activities such as gushing greetings, although at least they tend to kiss the air, rather than one another). – Read More on the Economist

4. It’s Not Marketing. These Products Are Truly Limited Editions: Companies often use the illusion of scarcity to make products appear more exclusive than they are. Scarcity marketing is more common in the luxury sector than anywhere else. Scoring a hard-to-find sneaker is more than a purchase—it’s an ego-boosting success. “You’re not only showing the rest of the world how special you are, you’re showing yourself that, too.” – Read More on Bloomberg

5. Coco Chanel Was A Nazi. What does that mean for fashion today? Chanel is not just a historical person, it’s also a very successful and powerful brand that exists today. Much of the storytelling around Chanel’s life has come from, or been influenced by, the brand that bears her name. – Read More on Forbes

6. RETRO READ: Chanel and the Controversial Entrepreneur Who Started it All. The full extent of Coco’s Nazi ties may not be inherently common knowledge, at least in part because Ms. Chanel never publicly commented on or explained her wartime activities, refusing to answer questions on the subject. Unwanted attention was further suppressed after the conclusion of WWII when the Wertheimers opted out of taking legal action in order to oust her from the brand, as an ugly legal battle would undoubtedly tarnish the brand’s already delicate image. – Read More on TFL

7. Can Black Lives Matter Finally Fix the Fashion Industry? “You have to flip the mirror on your own organization, especially before you make any sort of statement. What have you done internally as a company to make it right? It shouldn’t be that the one person of color in your organization is in the Diversity and Inclusion role.” – Read More on Cosmo

1. How Gen Z and millennials are shaping the future of US retail: “They’re looking beyond tangible products and actually trying to understand what is it that makes the company tick. What’s its mission? What’s its purpose? And what is it actually trying to build for us as a society?” – Read More on McKinsey

2. Luxury brands bank on a raring China market as pandemic lays waste to global demand: Driven by well-heeled consumers forsaking their usual overseas trips to places like Milan and Paris as well as pent-up demand that built during lockdown, spending in China on luxury goods has surged. – Read More on Reuters

3. Luxury and Prestige Are Not the Same: Prestige is about the image of the owner; it is bestowed; it is given; it is leveraged. Luxury is about the product or service. A high quality, high priced product may be a luxury. A high status product may be prestigious to own. A luxury brand is not necessarily a prestigious brand. However, a brand can have the elements of both. – Read More on Forbes

4. Store Landlords Face a Battle for a Cut of Online Sales: To offset some of the new risks, landlords are looking at whether they can include a portion of a retailer’s digital sales in the pot of revenue that is used to calculate the rent. Retailers will be understandably reluctant to hand over a cut. But there is some evidence that physical stores drive digital purchases. – Read More on the WSJ

5. Jonathan Anderson: “Lockdown forced us to break an entire cycle that we were getting a bit lost in.” – Read More on the Telegraph

6. Height of fashion? Clothes mountains build up as recycling breaks down: Since the COVID-19 pandemic began early this year, textile recyclers and exporters have had to cut their prices to shift stock as lockdown measures restrict movement and business slows in end markets abroad. For many, it’s no longer commercially viable and they can’t afford to move merchandise. – Read More on Reuters

1. How Louis Vuitton’s Virgil Abloh And Mercedes-Benz’s Gorden Wagener See the Future of Luxury:  “The idea of luxury is ever changing, but something that remains consistent is the notion that the things we personally perceive to be luxurious are really things that we covet.” – Read More on Forbes

2. COVID Fees Are Cropping Up at Businesses and the Majority of Consumers Are Not Happy About It: Industry experts suggest alternative routes to recoup costs, such as increasing menu prices at restaurants, a practice that most consumers likely already accept as a necessary move for businesses dealing with increased product costs. – Read More on Morning Consult

3. Critical Steps Luxury Brands Must Take To Rebound From COVID-19: Service needs to be “branded.” That means a company needs to have full clarity on what the brand stands for and then authentically deliver brand values in a differentiating way through the service experience. If this is done right, the service will feel uniquely different, whether it’s a store owned by Louis Vuitton, Dior, Gucci, or Balenciaga. – Read More on Jing

4. Retail on pace for the most bankruptcies and store closures ever in one year, BDO says: By BDO’s measure, bankrupt retailers alone have announced nearly 6,000 store closings this year, more from January through mid-August “than the record 9,500 stores that closed throughout 2019,” and most of them in malls. – Read More on Retail Dive

5. Asian rivers are turning black. And our colorful closets are to blame: “Every season we know that the fashion industry needs to highlight new colors.” But “each time you have a new color you’re going to use more, new kinds of chemicals and dye stuffs and pigments and catalysts.” – Read More on CNN

6. You Don’t Have to Pivot in a Crisis: Methodically not-pivoting can pay off — in the right situation, that is. Staying the course, with minor adjustments, has proved to be a winning strategy for some ventures. “We only tweaked our messaging.” – Read More on HBR

1. Why American Eagle is the last mall brand standing: The company has a single-minded commitment to its target customer: Gen Z.  “We’re gathering feedback from customers at every step. We’re reading comments on social, we’re getting feedback in stores.” – Read More on Fast Co.

2. Why skin-care startup Topicals uses Twitter as a growth engine: The company has seen growing engagement from its target users on Twitter, which Olowe credits to a growing desire among consumers for unvarnished dialog. – Read More on Modern Retail

3. Allbirds wants people to understand their sneakers’ carbon footprint like they do calories in food: “My job was to say, OK, sustainability is this incredibly big term, this broad umbrella that can mean 10 different things to 10 different people … and what does it mean to us?” – Read More on CNBC

4. RELATED READ: The Problem with “Sustainability”? It Doesn’t Really Mean Anything.Unlike “organic,” for instance, which comes with a certification process for producers of food and other agricultural products, as overseen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, sustainability-centric terminology comes with no such government-mandated guidelines.  – Read More on TFL

5. For Harry Styles, TMI Is a Four-Letter Word — and Gen Z Influencers Should Take Note: Gen-Zers are looking for more authentic endorsements. In the Aug. 21-23 survey, one-third said they felt less of a connection when celebrities post about products they have been paid to endorse, while 13 percent said they felt more connected to celebrities when they make sponsored posts. – Read More on Morning Consult

6. Why it matters when Black Lives Matter clothing is banned: “Being cognizant of the times is important now more than ever,” said Bannerman and McDonald. “Clothing is an outward expression of inward emotion.” – Read More on the Guardian

7. RELATED READ: Whole Foods is Allegedly Attempting to “Strip Obvious Racial Implications” From ‘Black Lives Matter’ Mask Lawsuit. Whole Foods was sued in July for allegedly “disciplining employees” in stores across the U.S. “for wearing Black Lives Matter masks” during their shifts, while enabling other employees to wear garments and accessories that bear non-company-related messages in the past. – Read More on TFL

1. Boohoo Found Negligent in Review of Suppliers’ Labor Issues: “Growth and profit were prioritized to the extent that the company lost sight of other issues,” Levitt wrote in the report. “There were a series of warnings and red flags, both from inside and outside the company, which Boohoo ignored. By the time they began to take notice, it was too late.” – Read More on Bloomberg

2. RELATED READ: Labor Abuse Reports Cut Boohoo’s Share Price in Half, Why Hasn’t H&M Suffered the Same Fate?Dull as it may sound, H&M’s embrace of HRDD enabled the company to address the incident quickly and lent it credibility at a difficult moment. By comparison, Boohoo’s approach to human rights has long been criticized by NGOs, and the retailer was slammed by investors as having an inadequate response to the exploitation claims. – Read More on TFL

3. In Paris, a fashion eco-system on edge as shows disappear: From Monday, 85 brands will showcase womenswear looks during Paris Fashion Week. Only 19 – among them Chanel and LVMH owned Christian Dior and Louis Vuitton – are pressing ahead with socially-distanced front rows. – Read More on Reuters

4. For Engagement Rings, Are Natural Diamonds on the Way Out? A new crop of jewelry makers using lab-grown and recycled diamonds, as well as recycled metals, appeal to millennials and other customers who like knowing exactly where their purchases come from. And for millennials, in particular, who are notorious for prioritizing experiences over things, the price tag might be the biggest selling point of all. – Read More on WSJ

5. RETRO READ: With a Rise in Lab-Grown Diamonds, Questions of Value, Disclosure Are Hot Topics. “If the natural diamond industry can differentiate its stones from lab-grown diamonds (perhaps positioning lab-grown diamonds as fashion jewelry rather than luxury items), the effect on natural diamond demand by 2030 will be limited up to 5 percent to 10 percent in value terms.” – Read More on TFL

6. How Chinese professional shoppers, or daigou, operate – by buying luxury goods for less overseas and shipping them for customers in China: Travel disruptions caused by the pandemic have been a blow to professional shoppers, especially the small-time operators who rely on making frequent buying trips abroad. Daigou companies are faring better, as they can depend on their connections with duty-free stores to ship products to Hong Kong or China. – Read More on SCMP