When we decide to go shopping, we usually don’t really think about who actually owns our favourite brands on high street. While most of these stores have been around for a long time, voucher code website My Voucher Codes recently did some interesting research that revealed the owners of the major fashion retailers H&M, Inditex, Gap Inc and Arcadia and you can see the infographic here.
These four companies own huge chunks of the fashion market, including COS, Pull & Bear, Banana Republic, Dorothy Perkins, Topshop, and Zara.
H&M was founded by Erling Persson in 1947, and is now the biggest fashion retailer on high street. It annual net income is a huge £1.7 billion, and many people may be surprised to learn that there are actually 6 other fashion retailers which belong to the group, including Cheap Monday, H&M COS, Weekday, Other Stories and Monki. While Cheap Monday was actually founded by Adam Friberg and Orjan Andersson in 2000 and then bought by H&M in 2008, the other companies were all formed by H&M over the last 15 years.
You may have heard of Amancio Ortega, who runs Inditex which owns 8 major, international fashion brands including Uterque, Oysho, Stradivarius, Pull & Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Zara, and Zara Home. Rosalia Mera and Amancio Ortega founded Zara in 1975, and then introduced new retailers to their main company, forming Inditex (the holding company). Inditex now makes £903 million annually, and Amancio Ortega is worth approximately £50 billion- making him the richest man in Europe and the world’s wealthiest retailer.
Most of us have shopped at Gap at least once in our lives, and the retailer was founded in 1969 by Doris F. Fisher and Donald Fisher. In 1983 the Fishers also purchased Banana Republic, before they founded Old Navy in 1994. This was followed by Intermix in 1993, and they also founded Athleta in 2009. Gap Inc, the holding company, has a huge annual income of £684 million, and Doris and Donald’s family are still involved in the company.
Did you know that Arcadia Group used to be known as the Burton Group? Arcadia has some of the most popular brands on high street, including Peter Robinson (founder of Topman and Topshop) Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Evans, Wallis and Outfit. Arcadia Group earns £205 Million a year and has Sir Phillip Green at its head.
Urban Outfitters was founded by Scott Belair and Richard Hayne in 1970, and has an annual net income of £163 million. Richard Hayne is the current CEO of the group, which is also the owner of BHLDN, Terrain, Anthropologie and Free People.
French Connection was founded by Stephen Marks in 1972, and he bought designer Nicole Farhi on board in 1978 to continue to work on building an identifiable style for the brand. The brand acquired Toast and YMC and currently makes £15 million a year.
It’s definitely interesting to see how many fashion brands are owned by others, and how much these brands make in profits each year. Now when you shop at your favourite stores you’ll be better educated about where your money is going.