Inditex closes 56 stores in three months: Marta Ortega steps on the accelerator in her optimization plan in the face of record sales
Larger stores and more weight of the online channel. The strategy of Inditex It is clear and the good results of the Galician textile company favor their plans. After a slight brake on its store optimization policy during the first quarter, the firm chaired by Martha Ortega has once again accelerated its roadmap with the closure of 56 establishments in just three months, thanks, in part, to the fact that its sales are shattering all records.
At the end of July of this year, the textile giant had 5,745 stores, compared to the 5,801 that made up its network of establishments at the end of April. This closure of stores has accelerated in its second fiscal quarter, since during the first three months - from February to April - only 14 brand stores were closed. This policy of reunifying points of sale began in the middle of the pandemic, and in the first instance, the company planned to extend it for two years, until 2022, mobilizing almost 3,000 million in investment to complete this omnichannel plan.
Last year – marked by the company as the final date of its optimization plan – ended with 5,815 stores around the world. A figure of great importance since, for the first time since 2012, the number of establishments was below 6,000. That year, more than a decade ago, a period of expansion began for Inditex, exponentially increasing its presence in key markets and which came to an end with the outbreak of Covid-19, given the rise in sales in the online channel. .
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However, Martha Ortega has decided to maintain this operation in order to locate and reorganize establishments that do not fit the model. Thus, in the first fiscal semester, Inditex has cut stores of all its brands: Zara, its flagship, has 160 fewer stores than a year ago. For its part, Bershka and StradivariusInditex's next two largest brands by sales volume, have seen their stores reduced by 114 and 85 respectively.
The truth is that the pandemic was a turning point for the reorganization of Inditex. Despite fears of a possible contraction in consumption derived from rising prices, the Galician firm has shattered all records, which has allowed it to continue with its sales strategy. The CEO of Inditex, Oscar Garcia Maceirashas stated that Inditex customers “move naturally from the 'online' channel to the physical store and vice versa”, which is why he is confident that the online channel will continue to grow hand in hand with the increase in store traffic.
“It is impossible to explain 'online' sales without the strength of physical stores, which provide key logistical capabilities,” he stressed. Garcia Maceiraswho assured analysts at the conference that online sales continue to grow “solidly,” which demonstrates “the strength of the model.”
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Thus, the strategy of the company chaired by Marta Ortega is to reorganize its establishments to have larger stores connected to the online segment. As proof of this, Zara, Inditex's most emblematic and profitable brand, will open its largest store in the world in the autumn in the Dutch city of Rotterdam, measuring 9,000 square meters and which will include a Zara Home, the group's CEO has announced. , Óscar García-Maceiras.
The opening of the store Zara Coolsingel Rotterdam It could be ready for this imminent autumn, since the remodeling works are going at a good pace and are practically ready. This superstore will exceed the surface area of the one installed in April in the Plaza de España building in Madrid, which with an area of almost 8,000 square meters was among the largest Zara stores in the world.
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