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Needle & Thread Pest Analysis

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Needle & Thread is very well-known for its feminine and modernistic contemporary clothing. Hand embroidery, exquisite embellishment, fine detailing and well trim are the signs of this clothing brand. Needle & Thread operates the business that mainly consists of 2 divisions, namely, ready-to-wear and bridal dress.

Needle & Thread can be shipped globally by purchasing through their official website Needle & Thread, or other online websites such as Net-a-Porter, Harrods, Nordstrom Direct, Revolve Clothing and Liberty. Its bricks-and-mortar stockers are Brown Thomas in Ireland; Lane Crawford in Hong Kong and China; TNT and Holt Renfrew in Canada; Nordstrom in the US and Myer in Australia.

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No matter it is a ready-to-wear or bridal dress, the company always provides their customers with the highest quality and service.

The creative director and CEO of Needle & Thread, Hannah Coffin received an old Singer sewing machine for Christmas present at the age of 12, since that time she wants to have her own brand. She spent the teenage years with the sewing machine, later she went to practice the BA in fashion and textiles at London-based fashion and design college Ravensbourne from 1999 to 2002. Upon graduating, she was immediately worked with Karen Millen as a junior designer. She learned about the commerciality of a collection, how to merchandise a collection of deliveries, how to cost garments, how to liaise with the supply chain. The foundations of how to become a strong designer.

Three years later, she had progressed to working with print. She left in 2005 when a position became available as the print and woven designer at All Saints. She stayed for eight years, gaining the essential experience that would help her to launch her own brand. She learned something from the 10 directors in the management team, so that meant they were all very involved in each other’s areas and exposed to the realities of running a business; deliverables such as sell-through, margins and visual merchandising. She left All Saints in 2012 by then she is a womenswear design director, determined to finally set up on her own. She spent four or five months for researching and planning. She needs to have a point of difference to her brand is recognisable and has room to grow.

Needle & Thread focus on dresses and meticulous surface embellishment at an acceptable value. The first collection had 17 pieces, a mix of dresses and separates priced at euro 120 to euro 900 retail. Since that the first launching merely with Asos in April 2013, the brand had received instant recognition for offering expertly drawn lace and floral motifs in intricate threads and sequins. It has fascinated a lot of stockists around the world, including Brown Thomas in Ireland, Harrods in the UK and Asian chain Lane Crawford.

However, it has a lot of ups and downs in the business journey. Similar to many start-ups clothing brand, Needle & Thread was almost a sufferer of its early achievement. The money ran out towards the end of 2014 and was forced to entrust new conservators. Fortunately, Marigay McKee, the former chief merchant at Harrods and president of Saks Fifth Avenue, invested financially and joined its board of directors in May 2015. Harrods was the first stockists to snap up Needle & Thread.

Subsequently, it set up the e-commerce website in September 2015. It started the first bridal gown collection for spring 2016 which launched barely on Net-a-Porter and Needle & Thread’s official website. However, she realized some of the brides may not purchase the bridal gown online, as the result the company organized the bridal gown shows in July 2016. The company decided to offer a high-end, ostentation and extravagance spaces for the brides to dress on with their friends and family. The first show took place in a suite in Hyde Park, London. Besides that, the company employed a creative director to give some advice to the clients. This has become an important part of the business plan. This decision makes a change to the ready-to-wear to become more diversification and fashionable. It embellished dungarees, bombers and bib dresses. It began to have a more fashionable way to dress up.

In 2018, the collections continue to diversify, establishing Needle & Thread as a global celebration brand, creating unique pieces to treasure for that memorable moment.

The company’s key stands are:

  1. Key occasion wear brand for women.
  2. High- quality fabric, embellishment, meticulous embroidery, thread work, fine trim, well finish – feminine, modernist and contemporary handwork and creativity, so many possibilities.
  3. Work hard on pricing – the price points are remarkable for the level of detail and handwork.
  4. E-commerce website for clients – delivery to 30 countries.

Market Position

Needle & Thread is a high-end clothing brand that offers an affordable price with high-quality clothing starting at euro50 to euro1200. The average cost of the product is between euro300 to euro600 with the high-quality and made for last forever. Although the price of Needle & Thread is quite similar to The Kooples but the quality is better than them. Self-Portrait has the same quality and price point with Needle & Thread.

Target Market

The customer profile consists of women who desire to have high quality and meticulous detail clothing in their life. Base on their budget, Needle & Thread has the product to pursue, regardless ready-to-wear or bridal gown.

Market Level

  • High range income couples
  • Aged 25-34 Market Level
  • High range income women
  • Aged 25-44

This is the identification of 2 major target markets for Needle & Thread. This demographic segmentation showed Needle & Thread customer base. The author suggests the target market of the brand is women aged between 25-44.

S.W.O.T Analysis

Strengths

  1. The ultra-covetable British label Needle & Thread has become known for devilishly intricate embellishment in buy-me-now silhouettes.
  2. USP’s: high-quality fabric, embellishment with sequins, beads and pearls, hand-embroidery with floral, thread work ready-to-wear and bridal gown.
  3. Global stockists in UK, Ireland, Canada, US, Germany, Spain, Italy, China, Hong Kong, Dubai and Australia.
  4. E-commerce global website for ready-to-wear and bridal gown. Delivery to 30 countries.
  5. Price points are affordable for the level of detail and handwork. It is sustainable to wear a piece that costs euro 400 rather than euro 4000. The company create pieces that are timeless and good value for money.
  6. Positioning in the fast growing ‘affordable luxury’ space.
  7. Needle & Thread has been nominated in the best start-up category for the WGSN Futures Awards.

Weaknesses

  1. 80% of sales- embellished and embellishment dress and gown.
  2. Only provide UK size range in retail and website.
  3. Limited bridal gown global stockists and showroom. Only in UK and US.
  4. Lack of advertising and promotions. Only advertise on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
  5. Repeat customer rate is really high.
  6. The company doesn’t have the financial capacity to compete with multi – billion dollars fashion label like Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Hugo Boss and DKNY et al when it comes to controlling the market.

Opportunities

  1. Capture the new and younger generation customers.
  2. Setting up the bridal gown boutique in Europe and Asia.
  3. Expanding the bridal gown stockists to Europe, Asia, Middle East, Canada and Australia.
  4. Using investment to grow the international business, particularly in the US and Canada.
  5. Seeking out partners in other countries, including potentially Korea, China and Japan.
  6. Exploring to take on a European wholesale agent.
  7. ‘Under- potential’ in France and Spain.

Threats

  1. Intense of market competition.
  2. Local and global competitors such as Self-Portrait and Maje.
  3. British pounds and Eurozone financial crisis.
  4. Similar with other business, the company is going to face is economic downturn. This will affect purchasing power.
  5. The arrival of a new clothing line who may want to adopt same business model like us.

P.E.S.T.E.L Analysis

Political

  • National and global tax law
  • Company tax, incomes tax, customs tax and indirectly via VAT
  • Fluctuation of a foreign nation currency
  • Risks in the international political situation

Economic

  • Local and global brands grow vigorously such as Maje, Sezane and The Kooples.
  • Graduated Irish designers own their brands at E-commerce website.
  • Economic slow-down discourage the confidence of investors
  • Median resident disposable income
  • New invested from Marigay McKee in May 2015.

Social

  • Potential customers are still didn’t know about the brand
  • Weak integration between social media and e-commerce store
  • Ageing population
  • More conscious of the environment and being green.
  • People are conscious of how they want to look.

Technical

  • Using social media and e-commerce website to communicate with customers.
  • Fashion Industries and business are permanently developing, progressing and varying, a challenge for any company.
  • Presence on social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Environmental

Sustainable policy – challenge work towards a more sustainable future

The fabrics, components and trims are selected to withstand the test of time. The company looking for the new ways which can improve the product. By encouraging timeless wearing, the company is attempting to reduce the chances of the pieces being disposed of in an environmentally unfriendly manner. Creating more sustainable product is a constant challenge.

Reduction of natural resources – organic fabric production problem

Organic options of the fabric qualities the company is not commonly available in the market at the moment, therefore organic fabrics are not currently used in the collections. The product teams are constantly reviewing new sourcing options with the hope that viable organic, or more environmentally friendly alternatives, do become available.

Packaging Recyclable – Need to improve, reaching 100% recyclable.

Delivery boxes and packing tissue are 100% recyclable. The stickers used on the cardboard delivery boxes and the plastic delivery bags are not recyclable, but the company is transitioning to fully recyclable options. By the end of 2018, all the packaging will be fully recyclable.

Legal

  • Employment rules and restrictions on operating hours correspondingly discharges the liability on the company in relation to laws.
  • Equal opportunities
  • Factories audit

The company requires the factories to be audited by a third-party auditor. In 2016, the company became B members of Sedexto help them manage the communication of factory audit reports. In 2017, the company upgraded to an A/B membership which allows them to maximize the benefits of the platform. They engage with the factories directly and require that they hold their own Sedex membership so that they can share audit information and manage remediation with speed and efficiency.

Brand Identity 7Ps

Product

Needle & Thread is a contemporary clothing brand. The company operates the business that incorporates into different collections such as ready-to-wear, bridal, bridesmaid, embellished dresses and embroidered dresses. Ready-to-wear includes dresses, skirts, jackets and tops. The core collections are occasion dress and bridal gown.

Price

Price points are affordable for the level of detail and handwork compare to other competitors. The ready-to-wear retailing from euro 50 to euro 700. The bridal gown retailing from euro 800 to euro 1200.

Promotion

Needle & Thread is not currently running any promotions but the customers can receive the newsletters from the company when the customers can sign up with their email. Apart from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and official website there is no evidence of any above-the-line promotion.

Place

Needle & Thread Design Holdings Limited had registered in England and Wales under company number 09393929. The company has the registered office at Lower Ground Floor, 18-21 Corsham Floor, London N1 6DR, United Kingdom. http://www.needleandthread.com/uk/, [Accessed 7 Apr. 2018]. There is a showroom at Brown Thomas, Dublin, Ireland. Customers tend to visit the showroom and take the chance to have tried. The company also has the official website where customers can purchase through online.

People

The company employs a core staff of 40 people in total, 25 of people who are in London and 15 in India. The manufacture of the products in the suburbs of Delhi, India. The company employ a permanent team based in the region to oversee and manage the production. The regular presence in the small network of factories allows us to closely monitor the quality of the collection and the way in which it is produced.

Process

The UK team be in charge of studio works such as getting the inspiration, researching the trends, investigating the market, integrating the mood boards, setting up the theme, design the patterns and doing the toiling. All the hand-drawn and the artworks are created into the pattern pieces and graded with different of sizes. The designs are then manufactured in India. The India team responsible to manage and plan the production, check the quality control, arrange the packaging and others.

Physical Environment

Needle & Thread is a British well- known feminine, a contemporary clothing brand. The global stockists showrooms are extensive and impressive makes it clear to the customer that they are high-end branding with affordable price point with high-quality production, fine details and creative designs. A brand shows us good design in good value, you can’t let it go.

For six years, Needle & Thread has been at the first line of design development, offering customers with the pledge that they will be looking forward to seeing what they want to be after their designing, finishing or trimming. The principal of Needle & Thread is to satisfy the customers’ needs through high-quality handwork is indicated by their broadening base of repeat clients.

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