The problems caused by the pandemic for the fashion industry do not yet seem in process of resolution. McKinsey & Company, with the report The State of Fashion 2021, photographs the current situation of the sector and identifies future trends and innovations to be implemented.
In 2020, the fashion industry lost 93% of profits, which in 2019 had grown by 4%. Certainly dramatic figures, but not totally unexpected. However, there are good chances of a recovery starting from mid-2021 and there is a general climate of cautious confidence due to the arrival of the vaccine and the growing trend of the Chinese market, now out of the pandemic.
In December, Gucci expanded its presence on the Asian market by announcing a partnership with the Alibaba Group’s Tmall platform. But it also decided to reveal its first capsule in collab with The North Face, right in China.
In fact, it is China that has recorded a great recovery and represents an important injection of confidence for the future of fashion. McKinsey & Company’s report estimates sales growth of 5 to 10% in the country compared to 2019, making it the strongest luxury market in the world. Europe, on the other hand, will have to suffer again during 2021, this also due to a probable extension of the limitation of travel between the various states. In general, pre-crisis sales levels will return only in 2022, while for the United States the return to normal will take longer. Here, sales will continue to decline over the next year, with a decline of between 7 and 12% compared to 2019, and with the prospect of a recovery that will be visible no earlier than 2023.
Overall, the report reveals some optimism. The pandemic has at least accelerated the change towards a more digital fashion and boosted e-commerce.