Carrera Jeans targets US expansion and multi-channel distribution model
Italian denim label Carrera Jeans is launching a new generation of jeans, and is refashioning its distribution network to adopt a multi-channel approach. The long-established denim manufacturer, founded over 50 years ago in northern Italy by the brothers Imerio, Domenico and Tito Tacchella, has been led since 2001 by CEO Gianluca Tacchella, who talked to FashionNetwork.com about Carrera’s latest strategies as it shapes up to meet new market challenges.
“By the end of the year, we will launch into multibrand fashion retailers in the USA, introducing two new jeans models: the first are women’s jeans treated with aloe - the only jeans in the world that are certified vegan - good for the wearer's well-being as well as look; the second model, Passport, are men's jeans with a series of hidden pockets, ideal to stash away wallets and personal items,” said Tacchella.
Carrera aims to establish a stronger presence across all distribution channels, paying increasingly greater attention to the complex, challenging world of e-tail. “The advent of e-commerce has changed the rules of the game for brick-and-mortar retail,” said Tacchella. “You no longer deliver to clients using pallets; it’s all a question of logistics management now, and pure players like Amazon and Yoox keep raising the bar in terms of delivery speed and range of services offered. Clients are getting used to service levels which they then demand also from companies which aren’t pure players. Besides, the web tends to homogenise things: you win if you’re able to deliver products more quickly and at a more attractive price.”
In the last year, Carrera’s e-tail site posted very high growth rates: “E-sales, for companies that aren’t specialised in this channel, barely reach 1% of total revenue, and ours were as high as 3%,” said Tacchella.
Carrera Jeans has an annual output of over 5 million units, and ranks second in the trousers segment in Italy with a 7% market share, behind OVS, a fast fashion retailer whose 8% share is chiefly due to its widespread presence in the country.
In the 1990s, Carrera delocalised production to Tajikistan, where the cotton used for denim comes from, and where it opened two factories which now employ more than 3,000 workers. This decision allowed Carrera to take direct control of its entire supply chain, a crucial factor for the success of a brand which is now the oldest Italian jeans label: “The plus of an integrated supply chain is having high quality products at very competitive prices,” said Gianluca Tacchella.
Carrera Jeans is currently based in an 18th century villa near Verona, home to the head office, the logistics department and the design centre, and is available in Italy at 40 monobrand stores and outside Italy at select multibrand retailers and mass market distribution outlets. In the 2017 financial year, Carrera recorded a revenue of €50 million, up 10% over the previous year.
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