1. In which areas does H&M have strategic capabilities and what are they? What are H&M’s threshold and distinctive resources and competencies?
2. In what areas and functions do H&M’s strategic capabilities provide for competitive advantage? To what extent can they be sustained? To what extent can other fashion retailers be successful in imitating H&M’s success? Which competitor(s) is/are a real threat to H&M? Why?
3. What should H&M and CEO Karl-Johan Persson do to sustain and further strengthen H&M’s competitive advantage? What should they do about areas with only temporary advantages? Are there areas where H&M needs to develop further capabilities and, if so, in which areas/functions?
H&M in fast fashion: continued success?
The case examines the role of strategic capabilities in building competitive advantage and the key issues to consider while evaluating the sustainability of competitiveness. H&M has enjoyed a leading position in the global fashion and apparel market thanks to its unique concept, business model, and ability to combine elegant designs with affordable prices.
That position, however, has been challenged by key competitors, and H&M mos to consider this and evaluate the sustainability of competitive advantage in its strategic capabilities. The case explores the areas and functions in which H&M has enjoyed an advantage vis-a-vis its competitors and pow if at all, this advantage can be sustained in the long term.