Asos still booming despite double dipFriday, 27 April 2012
"The launch of Asos 12 years ago was a game-changer for the fashion sector," says Caroline Nodder, editor of industry magazine Drapers. "Most retailers before that time didn't believe consumers would ever fully embrace the idea of buying clothes online. Recently, although growth in the UK market has plateaued, Asos has grown its business in international markets such as Australia, where it now has a £100m operation. It also continues to lead the pack with magazine-style online content, collaborations on exclusive clothing ranges, ease of purchase through mobiles, and quick delivery options."
The latest of these exclusive launches is a collaboration between Asos and the cult London boutique bStore, which features fun, summer print based separates. It was the perfect partner for us," explains bStore's womenswear designer Chloe Struyk, "as we're both young and creative in our offering. Where a lot of brand partnerships limit creativity in favour of commerce, with Asos we could push the boundaries a little, sitting alongside the brave buys they have from other brands."
It's a far cry from the site's beginnings, as purveyor of copycat celebrity items – the name stands for "As Seen on Screen". This has become a minority part of the business in recent years. Instead, Asos has focused on fashion in high and low budget incarnations but always with an eye on the more directional aspects.