Burberry is bucking tradition and shifting its runway shows to align with the retail calendar.
The British luxury brand made a bold move on Friday when it revealed that starting in September it will show two catwalk collections per year, as opposed to the existing four, by presenting its womenswear and menswear collections at the same time.
Furthermore, the collections will be available to buy online and in-store immediately afterwards in a move that it said “significantly shortens the traditional gap between the runway show and retail availability.”
In other words, consumers won’t have to wait six months to see something in stores.
To that end, Burberry won’t call its collections spring/summer and autumn/winter but, rather, September and February, to reflect the brand’s new “see now, buy now” business model. In addition, all store windows and point-of-sale material will change to display the new collections immediately, while the brand’s main advertising campaigns will also appear in key digital and print media after the show.
“The changes we are making will allow us to build a closer connection between the experience that we create with our runway shows and the moment when people can physically explore the collections for themselves,” Christopher Bailey, chief creative and chief executive officer, said in a statement. “Our shows have been evolving to close this gap for some time. From livestreams, to ordering straight from the runway to live social media campaigns, this is the latest step in a creative process that will continue to evolve.”
Indeed, it’s not the first time Bailey has shifted gears in an effort to be more responsive to the global customer’s immediate needs. Last November, he announced that the 160-year-old brand’s Brit, the classic London and the high-end Prorsum lines would consolidate under one “Burberry” label, designed for a worldwide audience.