This is an excellent article from The Business of Fashion detailing the current pressure on the Australian fashion retail sector.
On my recent trip to Sydney for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia, there was a lot of talk about the effects that the general economic downtown, the explosion of online retail shopping and the penetration of global fast fashion chains are having on the local market.
While the economic downtown is slight compared to what we have been dealing with here in the US for the past 5 years, it is starting to bite. In particular, independent boutiques are feeling the pinch. Many have closed. As such, the retail fashion market has contracted. Not good news for designers in an already relatively small market.
In search of markets, l can see even more Australian labels coming to the US earlier in their development.
The international online shopping explosion is also having an effect on the wholesale market.
In the past, Australian collections have been able to recycle their previous season's collection for the US market, e.g. the Spring/Summer 13-14 styles can be offered again in the US for Spring/Summer 14 with some curating and updating if necessary. But with more and more Australian styles available online, the US buyers will resist writing styles that have been out for 6 months. Australian designers will need to internationalize their collections to allow the collection to be ordered in both hemispheres concurrently. Unless, of course, they have the financial power to design and produce new collections as required.
The upheavals in the fashion world continue globally with technology leading the way. The is much more to come.