Forever 21 was founded by Korean immigrants Do Won Chang and Jin Sook Chang Los Angeles in 1984. When Do Won Chang first came to the United States he worked menial jobs. One of his jobs was working at a gas station, cleaning. Whenever drivers drove nice cars, he’d ask them what job they had. They all said it was in the garment business and that is why he went on to open a clothing store. He and his wife saved enough money to open a 900-square-foot retail store in a tough section of Los Angeles. They initially called the store Fashion 21, but changed it to Forever 21. Highland Park was a low-income area and Chang learned the importance of low prices. His goal is always to provide the best quality with the best price to consumers.
Today, Forever 21 has over 500 stores around the world. The Forever 21 Brand is built on the idea of “Fast Fashion”. They provide the most current fashions at the greatest value. Forever 21 focuses on the concept of “speed retailing” by offering clothing that is “here today, gone tomorrow”. This concept has gained Forever 21 a competitive advantage by offering new reasonably priced products daily that most retailers cannot compete with. Their fast fashion products are fashionable today but inexpensive enough to replace tomorrow. Items are priced so that customers aren’t making a big investment – just buying some hit items they could wear for a while and then discard in favor of the next new thing. Teen girls love shopping there because there is a treasure hunt aspect to the shopping experience. You never know what you might find. The brand also sells a wide variety of styles of clothing. With the large amounts of merchandise, a teenage girl with any style can shop there and find something that fits their style. The Changs also learned that if they order small enough supplies of each style, shoppers will learn to buy what they like when they first see it.
Forever 21 targets teenage girls, but they understand that teens love the idea of looking and feeling “21”. There are also plenty of women over the age of 21 who shop there because they want to feel 21.
The Changs have capitalized on a simple idea “Fast Fashion” and have leveraged it into a global retail brand.
Have you shopped at a Forever 21 store?