Competitive Advantage Analysis
The desire to better control their destiny has propelled apparel companies like Liz Claiborne to develop a specialty retail strategy. In this approach, the store location is a branding tool; merchandise presentation and customer service are integral to the total brand experience. Companies that market wholesale apparel brands, in contrast, depend on the retailer for prime store real estate, as well as for knowledgeable and engaged store associates.
In addition to the marketing and product skills (design and sourcing) that are common to both wholesalers and retail apparel brands, specialty apparel retailers need real estate expertise, the ability to flow merchandise in a timely manner from sourcing base to individual stores (often by way of a distribution center), and in-store presentation and store labor scheduling skills. At the same time, they need to maintain brand positioning and not over-distribute the brand.
A factor is a specialized financial intermediary that purchases accounts receivable at a discount. Companies use factoring to manage their accounts receivable and provide financing. Under a factoring agreement, a company sells or assigns its accounts receivable in exchange for a cash advance.