Zara is one of those global brands that almost no one in America knows about. But the New York Times has a profile of it this weekend on the heels of its founder, Amancio Ortega, having bumped ahead of Buffett on the Bloomberg Billionaire Index.
What’s the secret of the massive fashion retailer’s success? Just-in-time inventory and Big Data trend-following, what else?
“When you went to Gucci or Chanel in October, you knew the chances were good that clothes would still be there in February,” he says. “With Zara, you know that if you don’t buy it, right then and there, within 11 days the entire stock will change. You buy it now or never. And because the prices are so low, you buy it now.”
What aspects of the way Zara runs its business can you bring to your own?