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Tiffany Montgomery
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Surf leaders on junior's market

By Tiffany Montgomery
August 23, 2010 7:42 AM

This week is Junior’s Week on Shop-eat-surf, where we will highlight some of our talks with junior’s brands at ASR.

We sent writer Magda Liszewska to the show to find out more about what is new with the female side of the business.

But first, here are a few highlights from the junior’s press conference held by ASR at the show.

Brand leaders spoke about how they are approaching the challenging junior’s market.

Craig Stevenson, Quiksilver Americas president

Craig talked about the cyclical nature of fashion, and that he believes the girls side is poised for an uptick in 2011.

He attributed some of fast fashion’s current popularity to the recessionary times, but said some store owners are saying girls are coming in and asking for brands again because they are tired of fast fashion quality issues.

Fast fashion doesn’t stand for anything, he said, while at Quiksilver there is a rich heritage and lifestyle story. Quiksilver also has an advantage over some vertical players because it has deep offerings in many categories.

Quiksilver believes so much in the junior’s market, he said, it is launching the new Quiksilver junior’s line for spring.

Craig also pointed out that in the last year, surfing has been showcased a lot in mainstream media, which will likely have a positive impact on sales.

Toby Bost, CEO of the La Jolla Group and O’Neill Clothing

Toby BostToby said O’Neill has turned its female division upside down after sales slowed. Traditionally, O’Neill business was 60% men’s and 40% junior’s. Now, it’s 70/30.

O’Neill revamped the human capital in the division, hiring a new senior vice president and a new director of marketing. It also rebranded itself to O’Neill Girls from O’Neill Junior’s.

The company is making a big online push to drive trend statements to 16 to 24 year olds and is investing more in marketing, including print ads in mass media publications such as Teen Vogue. It is also investing in product placement services as well.

(Above: Toby Bost of La Jolla Group and O'Neill.)

On page 2: more from Toby Bost, Mandy Fry and Roger Wyett

 

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