Levi’s will be launching new stores and rolling out existing store refreshes as well as new in-store services throughout the East Asia Pacific (EAP) region. New stores are expected to launch this year in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Australia, and Thailand. This is part of the company’s plans to accelerate sustainable business and commercial growth in the EAP region.
Its stores and shop-in-shops will be refurnished into NextGen Indigo stores, and this will be done using digital tools to streamline the consumer journey, including installing LED portal entry archways and LED screens for marketing content. Levi Strauss & Co. managing director and senior vice president of EAP, Nuholt Huisamen, said that in Thailand alone, close to 100 new retail stores will be introduced in the new NextGen Indigo format, eight of which opened on 1 April. This marks the pivot towards a 100% owned-and-operated business model in the country, added Huisamen.
Select stores in the region will also introduce in-store tailoring services to offer greater personalization of apparel. According to Levi’s, as the retail market finds its new equilibrium, the company will focus on omnichannel engagement, leveraging the hybrid customer experience model. Some of the brand’s marketing plans for 2022 include leveraging the brand experiences with initiatives such as 501 Day and the Levi’s Music Project. 501 Day is a global campaign that commemorates the iconic blue jean receiving its official patent. Similarly, the Levi’s® Music Project is a programme that connects with and supports artists and aims to leave a more global footprint.
Exciting consumer-facing events and activities in Bangkok will also be announced, Huisamen said, adding that more localised activities will be rolled out in key markets this year.
D2C focus played a role in financial success
Levi Strauss & Co., which owns Levi’s, Dockers, and Beyond Yoga, reported an 11% increase in net revenue on a reported basis in Asia during the first quarter of the year. The increase was driven by both its D2C and wholesale channels and most markets, despite a few markets continuing to experience COVID-related impacts.
Direct to consumer (D2C) net revenues for the region increased 17% driven by strong performance in its company-operated stores, as well as eCommerce, which was up 22%. Wholesale net revenues increased 5% driven by strength of the Levi’s brand across several markets. Net revenues through all digital channels grew 17% and represented 14% of the segment’s sales in the quarter.
Huisamen credits its success with placing consumer at the centre of everything it does and its focus on D2C. Huisamen cited the recent expansion into Thailand as an example of this. With Levi’s global D2C eCommerce increasing by 22% in the past year, the company prioritised its Thai eCommerce site and created a dedicated CRM programme as well, to respond to the omnichannel behaviour of its younger, digitally savvy target audience.
With young consumers becoming a priority audience, Huisamen said that it is important the brand continue to adopt a digital-first mindset to better serve and appeal to them – both from a marketing and consumer standpoint. Levi’s has thus dialled up its social media presence locally with newly launched channels on platforms such as LINE, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. On top of that, there are brand collaborations and collections with other brands such as The Simpsons, BEAMS, Human Made and Levi’s® Fresh. These have already been rolled out in the region, and reflect the brand’s push to connect with younger audiences.
Source: Retail News Asia