LONDON — Fast-fashion giant Inditex is shutting all of its Bershka, Pull&Bear and Stradivarius physical stores in China as soon as the end of January, WWD has learned from multiple sources.
Their official website and Tmall stores will remain operational. Zara, Massimo Dutti, Oysho and Zara Home will retain their physical presences in China.
Each brand still has around a dozen stores that are still open in first and second-tier cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Hangzhou, according to Inditex’s website. The company has been shutting them since last year. There were 62, 65, and 35 Bershka, Pull&Bear and Stradivarius stores in China, respectively, a year ago. It means that Inditex has shuttered more than 120 stores of the three brands in the past year.
A former salesperson from Bershka’s Grandview Mall store in Guangzhou, the biggest shopping outlet in southern China, said the brand has been liquidating the inventory since June 2020 before shutting the store for good in July. Pull&Bear and Stradivarius closed their stores in the same location in August and October, respectively.
Inditex could not be reached immediately for comment at press time.
With the rise of local competitors in recent years, such as Peacebird, Urban Revivo and Mo & Co, the Chinese fast-fashion market is becoming increasingly crowded. Bershka, Stradivarius and Pull&Bear, which sit at the same price range with similar product offerings, appear less attractive in the eyes of a new generation of fashion-forward consumers.
It’s believed that Inditex’s store closures in China are part of the company’s wider adjustment in the wake of the pandemic. The company said last year it plans to close smaller stores and focus on its larger flagships. As many as 1,200 stores could be culled by 2022.
Last October, Zara opened its largest store in Asia in Beijing, spreading more than 37,600 square feet across four floors. The flagship store is located on Wangfujing Street, one of the most famous shopping streets in China.