Armand Basi and By Basi strengthen their presence in Asia with a further 10 shops
4 June, 2010
The profit and loss statement is the best way of checking whether it was the right time for a company to carry out a bold international expansion and launch a new firm. As for Armand Basi, the figures confirm that the decision was a good one.
Opting for a new range, By Basi, and for a forceful expansion into the Asian market amid the economic crisis at first glance seems like a brave but risky move. However, far from the standstill that may be affecting the business strategy of some fashion houses, Armand Basi is certain that this is the best time to put new strategies into practice. “If things go well, it will confirm that it was a good time to go into new projects. And it’s going well for us”, explained the director of Armand Basi, Chisco García. The head of the veteran fashion label is very satisfied with the results achieved with the first two By Basi collections. He seems enthusiastic about the opening of 10 establishments in China in 2010. The expansion process, which includes cities such as Shanghai and Hong Kong, will be carried out with local partners. Saudi Arabia also represents a key area for Armand Basi, which is why the young By Basi brand will be setting up an exclusive establishment this July in Jeddha, one of the most important cities in the West of the country.
A younger future
By Basi is the company’s new approach to target a very different audience to the one that it had previously been directed at. According to the firm, teenagers and even “pre-teens” are the target of the fresh, fun and original collections of the Catalan fashion house. Far from distinguishing itself for the exclusivity of the design, with creations by renowned former designers of the brand such as Markus Lupfer and Josep Abril and presented in international catwalks, By Basi now wants to compete in a similar category to that of Zara and Mango. However, as García points out: “Our brand and the quality that has always distinguished the creations of this company are the main features that will set us apart from the competition”. The firm now has its own shop in Calle Balmes in Barcelona. Although this location is not in the heart of the city’s shopping area, it has allowed the firm to open its own flagship store and show the informal, young and happy style that identifies it.
By Basi is undoubtedly “a radically different type of product” from the product that comprises the Armand Basi collections. Those collections are designed in a much more sophisticated style, which the company continues to be strongly committed to after its retirement from London and Parisian catwalks. “Everyone is leaving the catwalk at the moment, it’s nothing unusual. But that doesn’t mean that Armand Basi is lowering its investments”, explained the director. Chisco García joined Armand Basi in 2005, after working for Inditex, to lead Basi’s new strategy. The project involved reinforcing the brand’s international profile to the maximum with groundbreaking collections, designed by creators such as Markus Lupfer. The focus has changed now. But, according to its backers, the results so far are “very good”.