Business Studies, Passion for Fashion case study (DUE TODAY)Watch
Case Study: Passion for Fashion
Jamie Blair, from Fife in Scotland, started his entrepreneurial career very early; as a teenager he was to be found selling his old toys and books outside his house to other children on his estate. When he left school, he couldn’t find work and started dreaming of running his own fashion business. With help and support from family, friends, and also The Prince’s Trust, he launched a business featuring his own designs, Passion for Fashion, with very distinctive styles of t-shirts and jewellery.
Jamie’s primary aim is to produce individual and stylish goods, which are differentiated from the products found in mass-market fashion stores. Quality is therefore important and a key business objective is to produce unique, high quality designs which distinguish the Passion for Fashion brand from the competition. Passion for Fashion products are made in Scotland, rather than in cheaper manufacturing facilities in Asia and the Far East and as such are aimed at the middle price range in this competitive market as currently. They sell online throughout the UK and Europe and one year ago, as the recognition of the brand grew, they also began to sell further afield in the US, Canada and Australia.
With such expansion, Jamie has had to expand his production facility, which has been expensive. To fund this, he has taken out a large bank loan. He also recognises that the business is now too big for him to manage alone, and he has recruited a production manager which will enable him to focus on the unique designs of the products. The new Production Manager, Sarah Gordon, has experience of running textiles manufacturing operations in the UK and also in Hong Kong, where she worked for five years. Sarah’s first move has been to introduce a system of quality assurance in the factory; however, she and Jamie have been rather surprised by the resistance that the staff have shown to this change.
Unseen exam-style questions
1. Analyse the possible reasons why Sarah wants to introduce a system of quality assurance into the business (9 marks)
2. To what extent do you agree with Jamie’s view that Passion for Fashion’s competitiveness depends on the quality of the design of its clothes? (16 marks)
- Would do a brief intro defining quality assurance and differentiating it from simple quality control.
- Paragraph arguing Sarah would want quality assurance as it is part of the brand’s reputation and is its main corporate objective. Could use theory like high quality strengthens the brand image, reduces PED, allows for price skimming, etc. and ultimately allows for higher prices and thus higher profit margins.
- Paragraph saying “However....” quality assurance might not be a great idea since staff are resistant to it. You could maybe talk about motivation theory and how scrutinising (McGregor Theory X) could not fit well with these workers. They have an objective of producing high-quality products and micromanaging them might diminish their confidence, decreasing productivity.
- Conclusion saying that ultimately they would want to introduce quality assurance to ensure their main corporate objective of selling high-quality products is met. Although the staff may be resistant, they will likely come to recognise that it is for the good of the brand image and thus their own capability, thus this will not be as relevant.
- Brief intro defining non-price competition.
- Paragraph arguing that competitiveness is mainly dependant on quality of the clothes. The quality has gotten him this far and developed a strong brand reputation, reaching out to markets around the world. The business is known for quality and it is important they retain it, otherwise they will be just like the cheap discounted options they mentioned they wanted to avoid.
- Paragraph arguing that price could also be important to competition. Could maybe say it doesn’t matter how high the quality is if the cost of production is very high and people are not willing to pay a high price for his final products.
- Conclusion saying the quality is ultimately most important. It is what his brand is most known for and the universal support from multiple countries has demonstrated that quality is the aspect of the business’ image that they care most about, not price. Thus the main factor in competitiveness is non-price competition through quality.
Could probably also mention Porter’s 5 Forces in there somewhere.
Hope that helps! Again I’m doing Edexcel, so is a bit different, but hopefully that’s close enough.