Realigning the brand portfolio
Focus on BOSS and HUGO
In order to address customers clearly and consistently, the Company is now using two brands BOSS and HUGO commencing with the launch of the Spring/Summer 2018 collection. Although the two brands are clearly distinguishable from each other in terms of their individual attributes and address different customer groups, they embody the same high values such as quality and fit, innovation and sustainability.
BOSS brand strategy
BOSS offers confident businesswear and refined casualwear collections for the sophisticated customer
With its BOSS brand, the Company is reaching out to status-oriented, rationally-minded customers who wish to dress in a classic yet modern and high-quality style. The BOSS customer has exacting standards when it comes to quality and fit, and attaches great importance to an advantageous value-for-money proposition. The shopping experience must also meet the highest standards, particularly with regard to personal service. BOSS offers this customer confident businesswear and refined casualwear collections in the upper premium segment, characterized by the highest quality, sharp cuts and clear designs. BOSS invests in the value proposition of its products, particularly in the entry-level price range. By doing so, BOSS hopes to generate impetus for growth not just for its clothing range, but also beyond that for its shoes and accessories offering in particular.
Integration of BOSS Orange and BOSS Green completed
The previously independently managed BOSS Orange and BOSS Green brands were integrated into the BOSS core brand as of the Spring/Summer 2018 collection in order to provide the customer with a consistent brand experience for all occasions – business, casual and athleisure. The previous BOSS Orange range, which now forms the casual collection element of BOSS, has been upgraded in terms of price and quality and its fashion statement brought closer in line with the BOSS values. The previous BOSS Green range represents the athleisure collection element of the BOSS brand and retains a largely unchanged fashion statement. The Company expects to strengthen its market presence significantly in the growing casualwear segment as a consequence of this change.
BOSS addressing differing customer expectations in the upper premium segment
With the presentation of the Spring/Summer 2018 collection, BOSS has enhanced the quality of its range in the entry-level price range of the upper premium segment, thus enhancing the value proposition of its collections. The BOSS Tailored line addresses heightened customer expectations with respect to tailored fashion and casualwear. Produced in an exclusive edition in Germany, the full canvas suits symbolize the precise design and masterly workmanship for which BOSS is known and feature the highest possible comfort thanks to their unique flexibility. The same quality of workmanship is found at the top of the collection in the “Made to Measure” range comprising suits, shirts and shoes. These products are fitted and tailored individually, allowing the customer to stand apart from mainstream fashion.
Repositioning supported with numerous events and campaigns
The repositioning of the BOSS brand is being accompanied by numerous events and campaigns. BOSS menswear is regularly presented at renowned fashion shows such as the New York Fashion Week. The Company is increasingly using social media campaigns to step up interaction with consumers via digital channels. Thus, for example, various brand ambassadors regularly present their personal favorites from the BOSS menswear collection in the global online campaign entitled “Own Your Journey”. In addition, the Company sponsors premium sports such as golf, sailing, motor sports and soccer to convey brand values such as success, precision, innovation and sustainability.
HUGO brand strategy
HUGO is targeted at generally younger and more fashion-conscious customers
In contrast to BOSS, HUGO is targeted at customers who are significantly more fashion-conscious and consider their style of dress to be an important element in expressing their personality. The HUGO customer is open-minded, individual and spontaneous, and likes to shop, frequently doing so via online and mobile channels. HUGO offers this broad and generally younger customer base fashionable business and casualwear collections that are distinguished by their progressive designs and clear fashion statement. HUGO remains anchored in the premium segment of the market. With its focus on contemporary fashion, the brand now stands apart from BOSS more clearly in terms of its fashion statement and pricing. Thus, HUGO prices are up to 30% lower globally than BOSS prices. The Company expects to significantly increase sales of the HUGO brand in the medium term. In 2017, the Company generated 15% of its sales from the HUGO brand.
Social media activities to increase market reach
Numerous events and campaigns are being used to highlight the more pronounced positioning of HUGO. In this connection, the Company factors in the greater affinity that HUGO customers have to e-commerce compared with the BOSS brand. Thus, for example, last year’s HUGO Menswear and Womenswear Fashion Show at Pitti Immagine Uomo in Florence was accompanied by a comprehensive digital campaign. A broad audience was able to follow the shows via livestreams on the website and social media. With its social media activities, the Company is placing store by collaboration with well-known fashion bloggers and influencers particularly for HUGO. These activities are increasing market reach and enhancing brand awareness and credibility.
Womenswear remains an important part of the business model
Accounting for 11% of Group sales in 2017, womenswear remains an important part of the HUGO BOSS business. In terms of both fashion and price, the positioning of the two brands BOSS and HUGO in the womenswear mirrors that of menswear. The consistency of the fashion statements made by the menswear and womenswear collections is to be improved by harmonizing the color and theme concepts to a greater extent, while womenswear will benefit even more from the spill-over effects coming from menswear. At the same time, the fashion elements in parts of the collection will be increased substantially. The expansion of the casualwear product range also offers attractive growth opportunities.