Internationalization of Koyo Jeans from Hong Kong
(7 pages of text)
William Cheung owned an apparel wholesaler and a boutique shop that sold his clothing designs in Hong Kong. After attending a fashion exhibition in France, he realized his products were lacking compared to European brands. This experience motivated him to improve his jeans designs, and he soon registered “Koyo” as an independent company. He went on to become the first Hong Kong designer embraced by the French department store Galeries Lafayette. While Cheung had had commendable success, including many franchises in mainland China, he faced challenges related to expansion and funding as Koyo Jeans strove for international success.
This case shows how Cheung was able to overcome the weaknesses of being an apparel wholesaler and a fashion retailer. He was able to exploit and grow the wholesale business and move into branding and franchising. The case is suitable for MBA and other executive classes on entrepreneurship and creative business. In discussing the case, students will gain more knowledge in the following areas:
- The nature of fashion design and creative business.
- Expansion of a design business venture from a trendy Asian city into several countries.
- Concepts of exploration, exploitation, and ambidexterity.
Hong Kong, Medium, 2010
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