SWOT Analysis - Ralph Lauren

Polo Ralph Lauren is an American clothing company founded in 1967. The firm initially established itself in the United States, where it opened its first boutiques. In the early 1980s, the company went international and developed in the United Kingdom, Europe and Asia.

Ralph Lauren

Photo Credit: Ralph Lauren

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Introducing Polo Ralph Lauren

The brand is mainly known for its colorful polo shirts, high-quality cotton shirts, all bearing the brand image, a rider playing polo. The brand gradually diversified, offering clothing for women, children, perfumes, as well as a line of fabrics for the home (RL Home). The inspiration of the brand is clearly the classic British style and look, the polo shirt, the sports fields. The brand is elegant, dressed without being too classy, casual, but chic. Recently, Ralph Lauren launched a collection of watches.

The head office is based in New York, USA.

The company is listed on the stock exchange. In mid-February 2021, the stock was trading at around $ 111. Its main shareholders are The Vanguard (12% of the capital), Backrock Funds advisors (5%), Renaissance Technologies (5%).

SWOT Analysis

Strengths

The main strengths of Ralph Lauren are:

    Good brand image (good standing). Ralph Lauren enjoys a good brand image, positive, elegant, chic, but relaxed. The brand makes teenagers and young adults, who easily identify with sportsmen, dream of polo players, bourgeois, and want to share this feeling of belonging to a privileged class.

    Sponsor of the Australian Open. The brand has been a sponsor of the Australian Open for several years, which contributes to its good brand image and its reputation as a dynamic, sporty brand, in tune with the times. The fact that the brand is worn by top athletes is also a very positive fact.

    Innovations. The brand has been able to integrate innovations into its products and production processes over the years. For example, it has recently integrated bar codes allowing customers to flash products to learn more about their composition and has diversified its product catalogue by now marketing watches, in particular.

     Brand worn by many personalities. Many personalities from sport, the world of music and politics, spontaneously wear the brand without necessarily being sponsored. Joe Biden, the new President of the United States, for example, wore a Ralph Lauren suit on the day of his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States. This indirect and unsponsored marketing quickly and actively boosts the brand's sales.

    Timeless brand. The brand celebrated its 50th anniversary, and it hasn't aged a bit. Its clothes and collections seem timeless. Some polo shirts are shared by several generations with only, for example, the color changing. It contributes to the feeling of belonging.

    Commitment to environmental protection. The brand is strongly committed to protecting the environment and reducing its impact on water consumption. For example, it has launched a “Green” collection made from recycled plastic bottles and is committed to reducing its water consumption in its production process.


Weaknesses

The main weaknesses of Ralph Lauren are as follows:

    Brand hijacked by some hip-hop fans. Many personalities in the field of music, rap, hip-hop, carry the mark and have diverted their initial image. They wear the brand's loose-fitting polo shirts in very wide versions with chunky belts, baggys, etc. This can adversely affect the image of the brand.

    Environmental impact. Despite its efforts, the brand still has an unfavorable environmental impact, which can be seen as a weakness.

    Price. The prices charged by Ralph Lauren are high, which may exclude part of the population from its potential targets and, therefore, reduce its turnover.


Opportunities

The main opportunities currently available to Ralph Lauren are as follows:

    Joe Biden's open support, viral marketing. The brand benefits from the support displayed by great personalities for free, which can represent great opportunities for the brand.

    Strategic partnerships (Clot capsule collection). The brand has entered into several strategic partnerships, for example, the one with Clot, for the launch of a Clot x Ralph Lauren capsule collection. This can boost sales and brand image.

 

Threat

The main threats to Ralph Lauren are as follows:

    COVID-19 impact. The brand has been strongly impacted by the COVID-19 health crisis, with store closures forced for several months in different countries.

    Impact of political regimes. The brand was shaken by the riots in Hong Kong in early 2020, which led to a sharp drop in sales in the country for several weeks.



Polo Ralph Lauren is an iconic brand, which seems to cross the ages without difficulty. Its collections seem timeless and are popular with young and old alike. The brand has been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic but appears to be showing good resilience.


Sources:
Que vaut la marque Ralph Lauren ? Avis et meilleurs produits - Masculin.com
Joe Biden opte pour un costume Ralph Lauren lors de son investiture - Vogue Paris
Avec l'Open d'Australie, Ralph Lauren est de plus en plus à cheval sur le sport - L'Équipe
Polo Ralph Lauren x Clot : une capsule qui célèbre l'héritage - Vogue Paris
Ralph Lauren lance un vestiaire 100% personnalisable sur Snapchat - Vogue Paris
RALPH LAUREN pénalisé par le coronavirus - Capital.fr