Zara, which originally opened in 1975 in A Coruña, Spain, now operates in 80 countries, proving to the brand's statement that "national borders are no impediment to a shared fashion culture". The Gateway store is Zara's second in SA, following on the success of the Sandton City branch. DestinyConnect chats exclusively to Zara about their brand and the new Gateway store.
Can shoppers expect the same merchandise at the Sandton and Gateway branches?
Although all stores share the same fashion collections and brand image, each is different and unique thanks to this essential customisation for different cultures, shopping habits and local environments. For Zara, each store is an individual project, tailored to the characteristics of the site it occupies, the urban environment in which it operates and the shoppers who visit it. Zara targets people who love fashion and sells the latest trends in garments and fabrics most appropriate for the season. It offers SA a uniquely southern hemisphere collection which is constantly updated by delivering new merchandise to stores twice weekly. The product offering from Zara is wide and the production runs are short. The vertical integration of activities (design, production, logistics and sales in the company’s own stores) means that Zara is flexible and fast in adapting to the market.
What will set the Gateway Zara store apart from other clothing stores in the centre?
Zara regards its stores as a major component of its business model. The store is the interface with the customer and it drives the entire business – fashion design, manufacturing and distribution and, ultimately, retail, understood as a response to market demands – but is also the Zara trademark and its best communication tool. Zara pays special attention to the design of its stores, shop windows and decor, and sites them in the best locations in major shopping areas. Stores are only opened when the ideal location for the customers is found and in this case it has been in Gateway Shopping Centre, one of the most prominent shopping centres in KwaZulu-Natal. The store spans more than 1 700 square metres over one floor in which the Women, Men and Kids collections are displayed. The store has different entrances from the mall to ensure that customers enjoy easy access to its collections. Numerous fitting rooms guarantee a positive shopping experience.