Case 1: KolonFnC’s Global Expansion Strategy.
Korean fashion firms face difficulties in sustaining their growth momentum because of market stagnation and the aggressive entry of global luxury and SPA brands. To find a breakthrough, local fashion firms are adopting diverse strategies, including direct entry, licensing, and acquisitions, to successfully tap into the global market. KolonFnC, which is among the five affiliates of Kolon Industries, focuses its business in the production and sales of fashion goods and clothing lines. Focusing on its strength as a leading brand power in the sports and outdoor segment, KolonFnC is making strategic moves, such as diversifying its fashion portfolio, creating new value by collaborating with artists, and enhancing its R&D capability for new garment materials, which is led by one of its sister affiliates, Kolon Fashion Material. Under the leadership of the newly appointed CEO Dong-Mun Park, KolonFnC is aggressively seeking talented young designers in Korea to differentiate itself from its global competitors. CEO Park strongly believes that talented young Korean designers can be a viable source of competitive advantage against global competitors. Since 2010, KolonFnC has acquired several small-sized designer shops and fashion accessory shops to diversify its fashion portfolio and to create a young and vibrant brand image. This approach marks a departure from the strategic paths of its major local competitors, as Korean fashion firms typicallyfocus on licensing or acquiring foreign brands. This case aims to identify the practical implications of global expansion strategies by analyzing how the Korean fashion industry has evolved and how KolonFnC and its competitors have deployed different global expansion strategies in developing their resources and/or capabilities for future growth.