Giorgio Armani opened its Emporio Armani store next to Shanghai's historic "The Bund" in2004 and plans on opening nearly 30 stores by the end of 2008.
The Brand Philosophy
Unlike the usual practices of branding that are normally seen in the consumer goods industry,the branding philosophy in the fashion and luxury goods industry is quite unique and personality based. Most of the famous fashion houses like Christian Dior, Yves Saint-Laurent,Gucci, Versace, Giorgio Armani and many others were built on the personality of thefounders. As design is the most important ingredient of fashion and luxury apparel, theindividual style of these designers becomes crucial to creating and sustaining the fashion brand strategy. It is these unique designs and patterns that reflect the personality of their creator that gives an identity to the brand and helps to differentiate it from the crowd.The Giorgio Armani fashion house, like many other fashion houses, has been built primarilyon the unique personality and identity of Giorgio Armani himself. The brand takes on theidentity of the founder through the designs created.Though this aspect of the fashion industry provides fashion houses with a strong sense of differentiation that can be conveyed in a tangible and visual form, it also poses a seriousthreat. When an entire brand and fashion house are built on the basis of the founders' personality and identity, it becomes a major challenge to keep the brand going after thedemise of the founder, something many of the fashion houses have realized in the recent past.
The Giorgio Armani Brand Architecture
Whenever a brand gains popularity and acceptance from its target customers in its core business, the next obvious step for the brand is to charter a new course by venturing intodifferent product lines, different segments, and ever different markets. This phenomenonseems common across industry sectors.Giorgio Armani with its iconic popularity amongst the elite of the society and the fashionliterate segment of the market has followed similar steps by extending the brand. Today theArmani brand architecture encompasses one corporate brand and five sub-brands, eachcatering to different sets of target customers and at different price levels.
The signature Giorgio Armani line:
This is the main collection of apparel that consists of the signature Armani suits, Oscar gowns and so on, which are of the ultra-premium price points and essentially targeting consumers in the 35-50 year old age group.
This is Armani's venture into a slightly lower market segment. This basically caters to the segment of people who aspire to wear Armani apparel but cannotafford the ultimate signature line, or to those who crave to add extra products to their existing