Li Ning abandoned Kappa to take Aigle layout outdoor consumer market

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If the outdoor consumer group is seen as a "pyramid", Aigle from France is no doubt the target. Is it that Li Ning has enough perseverance and endurance in a market that is still in the cultivation period?

If the outdoor consumer group is seen as a "pyramid", Aigle from France is no doubt the target. Is it that Li Ning has enough perseverance and endurance in a market that is still in the cultivation period?

Discard kappa to take Aigle, Li Ning layout in advance

In 2005, it was the rapid development of domestic sports goods. However, at the beginning of July, Li Ning announced that it had sold its agent's kappa and dumped the brand that seemed unlikely to be profitable at that time and transferred it to Chen Yihong, who was then General Manager of Beijing Dongxiang.

Also in July, Li Ning and Aigle International S.A. of France established Equao (China) Outdoor Sporting Goods Co., Ltd. with a 50% shareholding interest in each of them to be responsible for the production, marketing and sales of the Aigle brand franchise in China. Sports and leisure clothing and footwear products.

There are many French outdoor wear brands, known as Aigle, Lacoste and Lafuma with a high technical content (a turnover of 154.6 million euros). Aigle was one of the fastest-growing outdoor wear brands in France at the time, initially specializing in boots and water sportswear, and later expanded to general outdoor activities including water, mountain, and rural leisure sports. In 2002, the turnover reached 128.5 million euros, an increase of 2.1%.

Rubber boots are Aigle's iconic products and are popular with celebrities and fashionistas. Dior's design director John Galliano, 2008 Oscar-winning Marion Cotterillard, and Hong Kong star Le Jier have appeared in public in Aigle rubber boots.

According to the French "Textiles" reported in July 2005, Aigle had only six counters in China at that time, and its turnover in 2004 was only 1 million euros.

After the SARS epidemic in 2003, the domestic outdoor product user market ushered in an explosive growth. Winning Aigle was undoubtedly a wonderful move for Li Ning at that time. At that time, Elder Gao (China) General Manager Liu Dajun was full of confidence. At the press conference, he expressed confidence that he would open 450-500 in three years. Sales outlets.

Signing the 50-year long-term contract also proved the confidence and patience of both parties.

Cut costs but cannot easily cut prices

After market research and consumer analysis, Ego (China) decided to find its own market commanding height for Aigle in order to be separated from competitors such as The North Face, Columbia and Timber Land.

In China, Aigle targeted the target group as a 28-45-year-old business-oriented consumer group, focusing more on urban leisure life than on professional outdoor people.

Zhang Ke, general manager of AEGO China, said that in addition to high-end outdoor enthusiasts such as sailing, equestrian, and skiing, the customers he most wanted to seize were divided into two categories: Business travelers may need some wind and rain protection. Warm and can go to the meeting of the clothes, but do not want to put too much stuff in the luggage; travel lovers to buy clothes may want to wear photographs but also look good, while the general outdoor brand emphasis on function.

"For such consumers, Aigle would be a good choice." He emphasized that Aigle's clothes are more important than the general outdoor brands that can achieve wind protection, rain protection, winter warmth, and quick-drying summer functions. Yes—it's beautiful, stylish, and focused on design and detail.

But because of this, Aigle's products are expensive, and some are even more expensive than The North Face. Nearly 3,000 yuan a coat has deterred many domestic outdoor enthusiasts.

China is different from France, where the total number of people playing outdoors is limited, and the high-end consumer groups are even less. “Outdoors are still a niche market and competition is not fierce enough to allow consumers to obtain lower prices,” said Zhang Qing, president of Beijing-based Key Sports Consultancy.

At first, Aigle chose to open a store in Beijing Lufthansa Mall. The products sold well, but due to the high pricing, the sales volume quickly saturates. What's more, outdoor brands such as Pathfinder, Ozark, etc Human discounts to attract customers.

Li Ning’s chief operating officer Guo Jianxin once said in an interview with reporters that as early as before Aigle and Li Ning cooperated, Shenzhen had manufacturers and AigleInternationalS.A. cooperation, but the products needed to be shipped back to France and then returned to the country, subject to import tax rates and other factors Affected, Aigle's prices have been falling until 2007.

Now, Aigle's shoes produced by this factory are not only supplied domestically, but also supplied to the world. Zhang Jian said that compared to three years ago, Aigle's price dropped by about twenty to thirty percent.

However, Aigle seldom uses price strategies to impress the consumer groups. Zhang Jian believes that frequent price promotions will increase the price sensitivity of consumers, leading target consumers to purchase only when the products are reduced.

Channel shrinks, profit still needs to wait

With Li Ning's resources, Aigle has gained a lot of convenience. In Li Ning's supply chain management system, modifying the distribution principle will enable Aigle's finished products to be distributed from the factory to the dealer warehouse; at Guangzhou Airport, the outdoor advertising space owned by Li Ning will be used by Aigle in the winter; Aigle uses Li Ning's E-Post system allows shop sales data to be fed back to headquarters in a timely manner; Aigle does not even need to have its own human resources and finance director.

Despite this, Aigle did not realize its original aspirations - at the time, Aegolge (China) planned to open 350 sales outlets within five years from 2006; and plans to have a turnover of 40 million euros in the Chinese market by 2011. .

For four years, Aigle has not shown any signs of profit. Li Ning's financial report shows that as of December 31, 2007, the total revenue of Aigle and Da Zou Sports Brand New Action (Z-DO) was RMB 10,436 billion, but the new year's revenue had already reached RMB 100 million. Li Ning Company also admitted in its financial report that Aigle's performance was not satisfactory.

However, Zhang Hao said that Li Ning and French Aigle are more in a strategic cooperative relationship. In 2009, under the condition that sales of all brands were in a downturn, Aigle's performance still greatly improved, but he said that the specific financial data is inconvenient. disclose.

Li Ning's 2006-2008 financial report shows that the number of Aigle's sales outlets has been declining, and dealer stores have been decreasing.

“Products must first be sold to dealers before they can reach more consumers. The key issue now is that dealers are not necessarily willing to pay for Aigle,” said Zhang Qing, president of Beijing-based Key Road Sports Consulting.

The scarcity of high-end storefronts has resulted in high rents, as well as rebates and a variety of costs, leading distributors to seek short-term benefits.

No matter how good the product is, if it can't be converted into sales performance, the dealers may only choose to withdraw, and sell the final Weihuo at a low price—in an outdoor enthusiasts forum, someone posted that it cost 600 yuan to buy the original price of 3,000 yuan. Aigle jacket.

Zhang said that Aigle is still in the brand cultivation phase at this stage, and the focus of the store is direct operation, not distribution, and the scale of development cannot be determined only by the number of shops. At the same time, it is necessary to pay attention to the building of the store's effectiveness and exquisiteness.

Aigle's current sales outlets are mainly distributed in major shopping malls and airport sales networks in China's first- and second-tier cities. At present, 80% of sales revenue is derived from direct-operated stores.

“In 2009, the sales performance of single store was increased to 30%, and two new stores opened in Beijing Shin Kong Place and Shuangan Shopping Mall performed well,” Zhang said? He also said that he will increase the proportion of franchise stores in the future.

Future Direction: Business and Card Positioning

How to allow Chinese consumers to see the quality of Aigle lies, and it is also the problem that Zhang Jian most needs to solve. In his demonstration PPT, Aigle's advertisements appear on buses and traffic signs in two carriages—but It is in France, not China.

Zhang Zhiyong, CEO of Li Ning, believes that Aigle's goal is not scale. Outdoor products are also a type of sporting goods. As the most influential sporting goods company in China, Li Ning wants to provide different consumers with a product solution.

However, the Li Ning brand has some primary outdoor products—field shoes in cooperation with Michelin, “cat claw series” designed by designers, windproof and rainproof equipment based on Lining ATproof fabric, and the price is 300-500. Between yuan.

Li Xiaoning’s director of external affairs, Zhang Xiaoyan, said that Li Ning’s outdoor products are for ordinary lovers and will not compete with Aigle—these products are rare, and most of them may appear in more than 300 stores directly operated by Li Ning. Unless dealers think that his customer base is more like it, they will be placed in dealer-operated stores.

He also believes that in terms of income and age, the pursuit of outdoor functionality is a higher level of people, they will not choose Li Ning's products, will choose a more professional outdoor products like Aigle.

Zhang Qing, president of Beijing Key Road Sports Consulting Co., doubts that if Li Ning is really committed to providing product solutions for consumers with outdoor sports needs, why not acquire a similar brand, go and explore Pathfinder, Ozark? In order to grab the market, why should we struggle to locate the high-end Aigle to foster the incubation period?

What's more, in terms of the competitive advantages of R&D, supply chain integration management, store expansion and management, and management teams that Pathfinder claims so far, Li Ning actually has it all.


Zhang Jian acknowledged that there is still a great challenge to achieve balance of payments, but he is not in a hurry. “The shareholders of both parties are not concerned about the revenue now. The shareholders want us to put the line a little longer, and take the time to put the store one by one. Do it well."

“What we are thinking about is, now the positioning of the brand, the products provided, the store opened is not right. I am very grateful that in less than five years, we have started to get it right.” Zhang Hao said.

Perhaps Li Ning chose to fight a protracted battle to bred Aigle. Maybe the shareholders of both parties think about signing the contract. Can they spend 50 years waiting?

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