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Schoolwear - UK - November 2010

The schoolwear market has been gradually changing as a result of the rising influence of the main supermarket chains, which has led to the price of school uniform garments falling to an all-time low over the last few years. Aggressive price wars between supermarkets have driven the price of school clothing down and meant that other key players in the sector such as high street retailers, department stores and specialist retailers, have struggled to compete.

  • The schoolwear market has had a tough few years, falling by 11% since Mintel’s last report was published in 2007 as the sector has suffered from price deflation. However, sales value has not fallen as drastically as feared, as the fall in the price of uniforms has been countered by more secondary schools introducing stricter uniform policies.
  • The supermarket chains have rapidly expanded their share of the childrenswear market, including schoolwear, as they have been at the forefront of aggressively cutting the price of school uniform. They are currently estimated by Mintel to have around 40% of the total schoolwear market.
  • Specialist schoolwear shops have lost market share as they struggle to compete with the prices offered by supermarkets and multiple high street retailers.
  • Parents with primary school-age children (ie under-10s) are most inclined to buy schoolwear from whichever shop is cheapest.
  • Secondary school parents, on the other hand, are more likely than those with primary school children to buy the best quality schoolwear. They also show a tendency to spend more on items that will last longer.
  • Three in ten (29%) parents agree that not enough retailers stock schoolwear all year round. Women and ABs are most interested in year-round availability of schoolwear.
  • Secondary school-aged children are very interested in being fashionable and several retailers have responded to this demand, with Tesco launching a mini-skirt as part of its school uniform range and M&S offering a fashion-led schoolwear line.

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Table of contents

  1. Issues in the Market

      • Main themes
        • Definition
          • Abbreviations
          • Future Opportunities

              • Tag this
                • One for you, one for…
                  • More than just shopping
                  • Market in Brief

                    • Schoolwear market sees sales fall
                      • Falling school and pupil numbers
                        • Changing family structures
                          • Supermarkets dominate
                            • Specialists suffer
                              • Primary school parents opt for value
                                • Secondary school parents want durability
                                  • A move towards quality
                                    • Lack of schoolwear all year round
                                      • The future
                                      • Internal Market Environment

                                        • Key points
                                          • Universal uniform
                                            • School numbers fall
                                              • Figure 1: Number of state and private schools in UK, by type, 2005-09
                                            • School pupils decline
                                              • Figure 2: Number of pupils in uk, by type of school, 2005-09
                                            • New academies
                                              • School leaving age to be raised
                                                • Half say uniforms are stupid
                                                  • Figure 3: Agreement with statements on fashion and appearance, aged 7-14, by gender, 2010
                                                  • Figure 4: Agreement with statements on fashion and appearance, aged 7-14, by gender, 2010
                                                  • Figure 5: Who chooses clothes worn by children, 2008-10
                                                • Childhood obesity – the scale of it
                                                  • Figure 6: Proportion of children in England aged 2-15 who are overweight or obese, by gender, 1995-2008
                                                • Impact of deflation
                                                  • Figure 7: Implied price deflator, clothing, quarter on quarter percentage change, Q1 2005-Q3 2010
                                              • Broader Market Environment

                                                • Key points
                                                  • Changes in young population
                                                    • Figure 8: Trends in the number of children, by age group, 2008-15
                                                  • Number of children per family
                                                    • Figure 9: UK households, by size, 2005-15
                                                  • Families on the rise
                                                    • Figure 10: Forecast adult population trends, by lifestage, 2005-15
                                                  • One parent families
                                                    • Figure 11: Dependent children, by family type, Great Britain, 1972-2007
                                                  • Rise in ABs will shift focus to quality
                                                    • Figure 12: Forecast adult population trends, by socio-economic group, 2005-15
                                                  • Employment prospects are positive
                                                    • Figure 13: Employment and unemployment, by gender, 2005-15
                                                  • Consumer expenditure uncertain
                                                    • Figure 14: GDP, PDI, consumer expenditure and savings, at constant 2010 prices, 2005-15
                                                • Strengths and Weaknesses in the Market

                                                  • Strengths
                                                    • Weaknesses
                                                    • Who’s Innovating?

                                                      • Key points
                                                        • Fashion-led schoolwear
                                                          • Plus-size schoolwear
                                                            • Ethical school uniforms
                                                              • Embroidery service – can Tesco compete with specialists?
                                                              • Competitive Context

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Schoolwear outperforms childrenswear
                                                                    • Figure 15: UK retail sales of childrenswear compared to retail sales of schoolwear, 2005-10
                                                                • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Schoolwear market suffers fall in sales
                                                                      • Figure 16: UK sales of schoolwear, at current and constant 2010 prices, 2005-15
                                                                    • The future
                                                                      • Figure 17: Forecast of UK sales of schoolwear, at current prices, 2005-15
                                                                    • Forecast methodology
                                                                    • Market Share/Retail Competitor Analysis

                                                                      • Key points
                                                                          • Figure 18: Market shares of main schoolwear players in UK value sales of schoolwear, 2006-10
                                                                        • Supermarkets grow share
                                                                          • M&S tries to differentiate itself
                                                                            • Specialists lose share
                                                                              • Multiple retailers suffer
                                                                                • Value retailers retain share
                                                                                  • Online doubles share
                                                                                    • Comparison of leading retailers
                                                                                    • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Figure 20: Advertising expenditure on schoolwear and childrenswear, by retailer, 2006-10
                                                                                      • Adspend recovers
                                                                                        • Supermarkets spend most on ads
                                                                                          • M&S renews spend
                                                                                            • Department stores reduce spend
                                                                                              • Specialists cut back
                                                                                              • Companies and Products

                                                                                                • Leading specialists
                                                                                                  • Banner
                                                                                                    • Company background
                                                                                                      • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                        • Financial performance
                                                                                                          • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                            • Trutex
                                                                                                              • Company background
                                                                                                                • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                  • Financial performance
                                                                                                                    • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                      • John Cheatle Group
                                                                                                                        • Company background
                                                                                                                          • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                            • Financial performance
                                                                                                                              • Figure 21: John Cheatle Group financial results, 2008-09
                                                                                                                            • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                              • Non-specialists
                                                                                                                                • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                  • Company background
                                                                                                                                    • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                      • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 22: Marks & Spencer consolidated financial results, 2009-10
                                                                                                                                      • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                        • Debenhams
                                                                                                                                          • Company background
                                                                                                                                            • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                              • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 23: Debenhams Plc financial performance, 2008-09
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 24: Debenhams Plc financial performance, H1 2009-10
                                                                                                                                              • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                                • BHS
                                                                                                                                                  • Company background
                                                                                                                                                    • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                                      • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                                        • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                                          • Asda
                                                                                                                                                            • Company background
                                                                                                                                                              • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                                                • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                                                  • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                                                    • Tesco
                                                                                                                                                                      • Company overview
                                                                                                                                                                        • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 25: Tesco Plc financial Results, 2009-10*
                                                                                                                                                                        • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                                                          • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                                                            • John Lewis
                                                                                                                                                                              • Company background
                                                                                                                                                                                • Product range and innovation
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Financial performance
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 26: John Lewis financial results, 2009-10
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 27: John Lewis financial results, H1 2009-10
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Advertising and marketing
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Consumer – Where Schoolwear is Bought

                                                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 28: Stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 29: Stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Supermarket chains vie for top place
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Asda holds on to top place
                                                                                                                                                                                          • A third buy from Tesco
                                                                                                                                                                                            • M&S stakes its claim
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Clarks maintains share
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Specialists suffer
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Fewer buy direct from school
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Next keeps consumer interest
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Bhs falls in popularity
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Sainsbury’s some way behind Asda and Tesco
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Value retailers under pressure from supermarkets
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • John Lewis loses schoolwear focus
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Most buy from more than one store
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 30: Repertoire of stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Consumer – Purchasing Habits

                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 31: Statements on buying schoolwear, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 32: Statements on buying schoolwear, by age of school children, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Primary school parents opt for value
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Secondary school parents seek quality
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Popularity of supermarkets grows
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Stores where schoolwear is bought, by age and socio-economic status of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 34: Figure 28: Statements on buying schoolwear, by age and socio-economic status of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Multi-packs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Quality over quantity
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Statements on buying schoolwear, by age and socio-economic group of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Strict schools
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Schoolwear on sale
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • More opt for cheapest options
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Quality has improved
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Consumer – Attitudes Towards Buying Schoolwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 36: Attitudes towards buying schoolwear, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Ease of buying in one store
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 37: Statements on buying schoolwear, by age and socio-demographic group of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Made to last
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 38: Attitudes towards buying schoolwear, by age and socio-demographic group of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • New uniforms
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Lack of schoolwear all year
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Schoolwear sizes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Older parents buy schoolwear earlier
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 39: Attitudes towards buying schoolwear, by age and socio-demographic group of parents, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Children decide for themselves
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Ethical schoolwear
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Target Groups

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 40: Statements on buying schoolwear, by target groups, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Quality conscious (20%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Reaching this group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Supermarket shoppers (24%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Reaching this group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Price conscious (18%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Reaching this group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Convenience-led (39%)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Who are they?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Reaching this group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 41: Forecast of consumer spending on school uniform at current prices, 2005-15
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Where Schoolwear is Bought

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 42: Most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Next most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Repertoire of stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, by repertoire of stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Attitudes Towards Buying Schoolwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 46: Statements on buying schoolwear, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 47: Statements on buying schoolwear during school term, by most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 48: Statements on buying schoolwear during school term, by most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 49: Statements on buying schoolwear, by attitudes towards schoolwear, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix– What They Think of Buying Schoolwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Most popular statements on buying schoolwear, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Next most popular statements on buying schoolwear, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Statements on buying schoolwear by children during school term, by most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Statements on buying schoolwear by children during school term, by next most popular stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Target Groups

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Target groups, by demographics, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Statements on buying schoolwear, by target groups, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Statements on buying schoolwear, by target groups, August 2010
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Stores from which schoolwear was bought in the last 12 months, by target groups, August 2010

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Arcadia Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Dorothy Perkins old
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • J. Sainsbury
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • John Cheatle Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • John Lewis Plc (department store)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Kantar Media
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Matalan Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Next Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Peacocks
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Trutex

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Schoolwear - UK - November 2010

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  £1,995.00 (Excl.Tax)