Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Abercrombie and Fitch report Essay Example for Free
Abercrombie and foumart report EssayAbercrombie fitch was open up in 1892, and originally was a retailer of outdoor and sporting goods. In 1976, it went bankrupted and was acquired by Limited Brands in 1988. Michael Jeffries was nominated to become CEO in 1992, and he dramatically improved the status of AF to be a international fashion retailer. Now the symbol of Ameri whoremaster ardor and beloved check off by many customers worldwide, Abercrombie and Fitch produces importantly appargonl, corsage and lifestyle goods targeting at consumers aged from 18 to 25. There atomic number 18 4 sub-brands in AF which ar Abercrombie and Fitch, Abercrombie Kids, Hollister and lamellay Hicks. Each sub-brand has its own characteristics and its positioning in the fashion market is slightly different. Abercrombie Fitch is rooted in East Coast traditions and Ivy League heritage, it is the essence of privilege and casual high life (Abercrombie and Fitch Co. 2012, P. 3).Abercrombie Kids is for the kids who want to be like their older br separates or sisters and the core concept of it is casual and preppy looks. Hollisters heritage stems from Southern California and was designed to represent cool beach style. Gilly Hicks is the newest and smallest brand in AF agnize further for the girls clothes or underwear. With the opening of a flagship store in Canada in 2005, AF started to enter the global market. Now it has 139 stores out situation of the US, and it recently opened stores in Seoul, South Korea and in Shanghai, china to expand into the Asian market. We chose Abercrombie and Fitch since we would like to see how successful this multinational app arel order can be by insisting its All-American style in different cultures. We wanted to explore its unique retail dodge and brand positioning as this brand is sought after a lot of young adult. Several disputable issues of AF were the deciding factor in our choice of guild.Work Oriented CultureOf all the methods which exist for explaining ethnical differences, the dimensional approach is more(prenominal) influential (Peng Meyer, 2011). GeertHostede, a Dutch professor, established the overarching theory consisting of five heathen dimensions. The first is power distance which outlines the expectation and acceptance of the unequal distribution of power by the little powerful members of a country (Peng Meyer, 2011). Individualism vs. collectivism is the cultural dimension characterized by whether thecitizens view themselves as distinctly different or dependent upon group involvement. The third cultural dimension is masculinity vs. muliebrity which refers to the values, traditional male or female, which are held in the highest realize. De confinesining the extent to which an individual will tit un accredited circumstances is the uncertainty avoidance dimension. Finally, long-term orientation portion outs with the emphasis the citizens come to the fore upon perseverance and nest egg f or future disclosement (Peng Meyer, 2011). The US is the home country of Abercrombie and Fitch.Power DistanceIndividualityMasculinity/ muliebrityUncertainty AvoidanceLong-term OrientationScoring a 40 caused the US to be in the lower half of the countries for power distance. Hierarchy is established for convenience (Geert-hofstede.com, 2014) as superiors are easily accessible and communicate informally. Information is free flowing as managers event input form their subordinates. The US original the highest individuality pock of 91. Citizens are considered the best joiners in the world (Geert-hofstede.com, 2014). It is not extreme for Americans to work with nation with whom they are not familiar as deep friendships are not commonly formed. What an individual is adequate to(p) of doing or has already d wholeness will watch over their value of beinghired or promoted. be 15th on the masculinity scale with a score of 62 indicates a virile nation. US firms bring on a culture of live to work (Geert-hofstede.com, 2014) where higher status and financial rewards are several(prenominal)ise driving factors. Leaders which are forceful and decisive are highly valued. Employees who are less in sight and indecisive are not able to attain successWith a score of 46, the US is shown to agree a below average uncertainty avoidance. Innovation is super valued as new ideas are quickly accepted. As compared to firms in higher uncertainty avoidance countries, US firms will quickly go after new, emerging, and risky opportunities. The US is seventh from the bottom of the list for long-term orientation with a score of 29. While future planning is involved in US firms decision making process, quarterly reports are incredibly significant and limit the time firms can look ahead. Employees savings rates in countries such(prenominal) as the US are much lower than those in long-term oriented nations.Home neck of the woods Oriented FirmRugman and Verbeke in 2004 established a tr iad of economic power consisting of Asia, the EU, and North America. compendium of 380 firms determined how many were home- section oriented, bi-regional, host-region oriented, or global (Rugman Verbeke, 2004). A home-region oriented firm has at least 50% of their gross gross revenue in their home region of the triad (Rugman Verbeke, 2004). To be a bi-regional company, at least 20% of all sales must take place in twain regions, but the company cannot contribute more than 50% in the region where the company is ground. If a firm has more than 50% of its sales in a region different than its home region then the firm is considered host region oriented. In order to be global, a firm must have at least 20% of their sales in all three regions of the triad, but less than 50% in any one region (Rugman Verbeke, 2004).AF is considered a home region oriented company based upon the released date from 2013. Of the $4,116.9 million in sales, 64.59% or $2,659.09 million is generated in the home region, North America. $1,116.78 million or 27.13% of all their sales take place in the EU region. Asia is far behind as the remaining 8.28% of sales, 341.03 thousand dollars, is dispersed crosswise therest of the world. No calculations were needed as the sales throws and percentages were given. (Csimarket.com, 2014). The industry for which AF operates can explain their sales distribution. As the company is in the fashion and retail industry, its sales are incredibly dependent upon the affinity of the customers for detail brands and styles. Since the company is based in North America, the firm is much more familiar with the prevalent style which would need to be present to gain sales. AF also established itself in their home country forrader expanding. These factors could explain the firms international orientation.Ownership AdvantagesFirst, one downstream self-control returns of AF is the ownership of a specific brand image which is not easily imitable. The firm operates under different brands Abercrombie Fitch, Abercrombie Kids, Hollister, and Gill Hicks for slightly different targets. Each sub-brand represents a different brand image but they eventually conduce up to one big image, American Cool. To the fashion retailers, the most central ownership advantage is their own irreplaceable brand image. In this context, AF has its distinct position in the fashion market and is utilise their brand image success plenteousy to attract the customers (Abercrombie Fitch Co. 2012, P. 3).Second, the other ownership advantage of AF is its in-store sleep together. AF stimulates the customers senses of sight, sound, smell, and touch by utilizing handsome male models, music, fragrances, rich fabrics and interior design. Customers (mainly females) can get a chance to take a photo with the models, and this became a representative in-store draw of AF. In addition to this, AF uses certain perfume to attract customers and to make them remember AF for a longer time than just seeing, which is called scent merchandise. Also, the stores always play the mental picture of the American beach to emphasize its cool brand image. AF only sets up the flagship stores and controls them by the managers who are prepare in the US and sent to the international flagship stores to monitor the whole operation. This system makes it possible to transfer this in-store experience to the freshly established flagship stores very well.Therefore, all AF stores, even thoseoverseas, are committing the standardise in-store experience by whirl customers the kindred experience (Abercrombie and Fitch Co. 2012, p. 4). Uppsala Model Network Internationalization Model Differences The Uppsala model views that market intimacy is gained only by operating directly in a market thus the model focuses on experimental intimacy (Childs Jin 2013, p. 38). According to the Uppsala model, will increase their market commitment in small stagesly based upon their experience in the market and based on the knowledge they gain in the market. On the other hand, match to the Network internationalization model, firms can start their internationalization in the beginning they enter the market by remission network birth in advance. Therefore, firms do not have to follow the stages of the Uppsala model but grammatical construction a number of such relationships constitutes a bigger and valuable investment, and once established, and organizational or ownership advantage (Vahlne Johanson 2013, p. 195).Uppsala Model Network Internationalization Model Similarities Both models consider the network as important knowledge that firms should gain. The network facilitates information and experience by building up the trust in a relationship and also by learning from other market players. Within the Uppsala model, the core concept of the gradual extension of a companys internationalization into a market, which gains the company valuable experience, should be based on the interplay with customers, suppliers, and other competitors. As the companys network stretchs, it can get more knowledge and at the same time its degree of internationalization will become higher. In this context, we can occur similarity between the two models. International TrajectoryIn 2005, AF first opened its flagship store in Canada. Starting from this, AF entered the atomic number 63an market with opening flagship stores in major cities of the europiuman countries, such as capital of the United Kingdom, Milan, Paris, and Amsterdam. On December 15, 2009, AF opened its first Asian flagship store in Tokyo as a head start point to enter the Asian market. Currently, AF owns 19 flagship stores in Canada, 110 in Europe, and 11 in Asia. Among those stores, 39 are sales subsidiaries. In Canada, the Netherlands, and Hong Kong, AF has wholly-owned subsidiaries because there are DCs in those countries, meaning that they are the most important countries in each continent (Abercro mbie Fitch Co. 2012, PP. 19, 101102). Firms who have a strong brand image and bear asset specificity (a unique product or a unique way of doing business) are more likely to internationalize quickly (Childs Jin, 2013). AF is a good example of this case, so it could skip the lower stages of the Uppsala model, such as sporadic exports or exports through sales agents, and could set up the subsidiaries directly overseas, which only takes 7-9years. Consequently, now we can assume that the company is already in a quite higher stage of the Uppsala-based stages model with its sales subsidiaries and wholly-owned subsidiaries. Degree and Nature of International SourcingAbercrombie and Fitch does not own factories producing the products and it has not sourced more than 10% of its sell from any single member of its approximately 155 vendors in 20 countries, including the join States, China, Vietnam and Guatemala (Abercrombie Fitch Co. 2012, p. 4). In crabby, more than 90% of its suppliers are in Asia (Google.com, 2011). The company has established supplier product quality standards to retard the high quality of fabrics and other materials used in the companys products (Abercrombie Fitch Co. 2012, p. 5). Abercrombie and Fitch has two distribution touch ons (DCs) in bran-new Albany, Ohio. The two DCs were initially responsible for the distribution of merchandise to the stores and direct-toconsumer customers, both regionally and internationally. Since 2009, AF has offshored its DCs by using a third-party DC (TNT Fashion) in Roosendaal, the Netherlands for the distribution of merchandise to stores and direct-to-consumer customers located in Europe and a third-party DC in Hong Kong since 2011 for the distribution of merchandise to stores located in Asia. Its two DCs in New Albany, Ohio currently only support its North American stores, and direct-to-consumer customers outside of Europe (Abercrombie Fitch Co. 2012, p. 5).The nature of offshoring the DCs is to broaden the direct-toconsumer business worldwide and facilitate the international expansion of Abercrombie and Fitch stores in Europe and Asia. Furthermore, Abercrombie and Fitch has a strong, cooperative and long-term relationship with its vendor factories. When the CEO Mike Jeffries was asked about the cost pressures from raw materials and perseverance costs, he emphasizedthat a strong relationship with vendors has been key since they had assisted AF and been fair in term of cotton prices and other increases. He also added that AF and vendors have been there for each other for the long term (Barrie, 2010). Strategic Advantages and Drawbacks of International Sourcing and Offshoring The first advantage of international sourcing is that AF can hedge against the supplier risks. Since AF has relationships with over degree Celsius vendors in 20 countries, it can flexibly switch from one source to another when necessary.AF has the ability to increase its total picture capacity. Even if there are a sudden wave of demand for certain products, having a strong relationship with over speed of light vendors will ensure AF a certain supply of products and therefore the supply chain will be more stable (Inboundlogistics.com, 2011). However, such global sourcing strategy also brings some disadvantages. The source of production activity is as well as dispersed it is a challenge to let out qualified executives who know the topical anesthetic business environment and understand the corporations inner works especially in the Asia Pacific region (Inboundlogistics.com, 2011). We would advise Abercrombie and Fitch to send executives from the US to those countries and hire local managers simultaneously to ensure the production activity smooth.The primary advantage of offshoring is to reduce costs. Offshoring its distribution centers in Europe and Asia can save distribution and transportation costs of merchandise to stores in Europe and Asia. However, if the third-party distributi on center in the Netherlands or Hong Kong bars down suddenly, the distribution of merchandise in Europe and Asia will be totally disrupted. Therefore, AF should leverage the risk by running an additional distribution center in some cheap countries, such as Vietnam. This move will also support AFs future expansion.Opportunities and Threats in VietnamOpportunities savvy cost in Vietnam are absolutely lower than that of China (JETRO, 2011) (NWPC, 2014). fit Appendix 1 for figure 1.Government form _or_ system of governing body to attract FDI (Kim, Lee Cheong, 2011). agnize AppendixThreats2.TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Cost reduction, lead time reduction, and tax benefit. See Appendix 3 for table 1.Currently only 16% of AF clothes are produced in Vietnam (Google.com, 2011). See Appendix 4 for figure 2.Vietnam has a better status for lead times, infrastructure, and working circumstances than other developing countries (Kim, Lee Cheong, 2011). As AF doesnt operate their own ma nufacturing facilities but uses vendors, it can be zealous competition among the companies who want to attract vendors in Vietnam.Bangladesh, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka which have lower labor cost than Vietnam are try to develop their infrastructure and manufacturing conditions to attract vendors. In the future, those undeveloped countries can be a threat to the Vietnam market. minimum wage in Vietnam is increasing by 15% in 2013, and 17% in 2014 (Vettoretti Huyen, 2013).Suggestions for the Emerging marketWe suggest establishing a distribution center (DC) in Vietnam as a strategy to create synergism with the new manufacturing facilities in Vietnam. Currently, many global fashion retailers are act to generate vertical integrating in the emerging markets because they can control the demand fluctuation easily and simplify procurement and administrative procedures eliminating the need to deal with a wide variety of suppliers and distributors. If TPP is concluded, the degree of tarif fs will decrease, so it would be better to concentrate on upstream investment in Vietnam. Because emerging markets are not wellorganized and there is more lack of conditions than the developed market, owning a DC will be more stable and protective. Eventually, a DC in Vietnam will create good access to the Asian market.Inoverseas developed markets, AF doesnt own the distribution centers but uses third-party DCs in the Netherlands and Hong Kong. However in Vietnam, we assume that AF would set up a distribution center as a wholly-owned subsidiary. The third-party logistics in outsourcing the whole distribution to a specialized company would reduce the cost. Now AF has only third-party DCs in overseas and there is a threat to be shut down. In order to prevent this situation in advance, owning at least one wholly-owned DC is practical. Because a wholly-owned DC totally controlled by the company, the company can adjust to the demand fluctuation better than a third-party DC. Therefore who lly-owned DC will function as a safety net in a case there is an uncontrollable problem in a third-party DC. Strategic Objectives of Entering ChinaWith regard to market seeking, China will represent the biggest market potential for our brands, said Craig Brommers, senior vice chairwoman of marketing for AF (Fashionunited.com, 2014). Undoubtedly, China is a huge and growing market with a population of approximately 1.4 billion. Therefore, AF has been trying to locate its potential customers by opening the first flagship store in Shanghai and 8 Hollister stores in different cities since 2012. The company plans to open over 100 new stores under its Hollister and AFs label in China over the next ten years (Fashionunited.com, 2014). With regard to efficiency seeking, there are an abundant suppliers and a low-cost labor force. Specifically, over 60% of its vendors were located in China in 2011 (Google.com, 2011). Also, there has been a distribution center in Hong Kong since 2011. Therefor e, AF can achieve lower transportation costs since the delivery is encompassing(prenominal) to its target markets.Past Foreign Entry ModesAbercrombie and Fitch started its international expansion in London by opening the first overseas flagship store in 2007, and it almost adopted a single unusual entry mode in the last 7 years. AF established a wholly-owned subsidiary when entering a new market, such as the Netherlands, UK, HongKong, Singapore and Japan. However, AF opened its first Hollister store in Dubai in 2013 through a joint venture with Majid Al Futtaim Ventures and an AF flagship store is expected to open in Dubai in 2014 the same way (Majid Al Futtaim Ventures, 2014).For Abercrombie and Fitch, establishing wholly-owned subsidiaries is a better entry mode for international expansion. AF can enjoy full control of the international stores since it pursues an intensely American retail and marketing strategy (Marx, 2010). Therefore, establishing a wholly-owned subsidiary enab les AF to meld the operation of its subsidiaries tightly with itself and to control what the subsidiary should follow. In addition, it takes a lot of efforts to establish an effective relationship in a joint venture and the cultures of the companies may be incompatible. Financially, The parent company can unite the results of its wholly-owned subsidiaries into one financial statement (Basu, 2014).Considering that AF is opening more international stores worldwide, the financial reporting would be too complicated if it engages in joint ventures in many different countries. Multinational Strategy Home echo StageThe multinational strategy of Abercrombie and Fitch closely resembles the home replication strategy. There are several evidences from practice. First of all, the local responsiveness of AFs international stores is very low. The staff greets shoppers in English, rather than the local language of the foreign countries. This results in foreign customer alienation since some cus tomers will be squeeze to surface their rusty English during the transaction (Marx, 2010). AF replicates its home country-based competencies such as brand positioning. Sex pull is a big part of the brands charm in the United States AF also puts this masculine ideal into practice of its international stores. Particularly, many of the male staff members are half-naked in the stores (Marx, 2010). Finally, the writ of execution of its marketing strategy and operation is easier. The store design and the interior are the same worldwide along with extremely dim lightings, a strong smell of cologne and perfume and the staff singing or dance with thepounding American songs.Real-life Social and Environmental DilemmasA real life social dilemma has adversely impacted AF in recent years surrounding its CEO. The official website of the company states the company strives to be an inclusive environment that values the differences of its associates and customers (Anfcareers.com, 2014). While thi s is the official statement, an interview with the CEO, Mike Jeffries, brought a contrasting view to light. Jeffries determine his target market by claiming, a lot of pack dont belong in our clothes be we exclusionary? Absolutely (Walker, 2014). AF has since released an apology, but boycotts, negative celebrity statements, and petitions were enacted. This issue is an ethical dilemma to the firm because of their strategic place in the clothing market. In order to stay popular, an essence of exclusivity has been built around the brand, since the more grievous bodily harm the brand appears, the more interest the brand receives. This has been AFs approach, but this strategy is not inclusive.The firm had to determine whether to increase their size options or continue with the current productive model. The most important stakeholders for this dilemma are the CEO and those who hold a large portion of AFs stock. If AF is not able to effectively quicken the situation then the companys p rofits will continue to suffer. AF is a public company so their performance directly disturbs their stock. If the dilemma is not resolved quickly, it could trigger a chain chemical reaction of a loss in profits which leads to lower stock causing several holders of the stock to omit it effectively dropping the value of the stock. The effects of this dilemma could have extremely long lasting repercussions.An environmental issue which has become a dilemma for AF is the implementation of harmful chemicals in their signature fragrances. Within the fragrance Fierce, 11 secret chemicals that are not listed on the label (Henricks, Malkan, Shils, 2014) were found that heighten allergic reactions. This particular fragrance caused reactions from dissimilar activist groups such as Physicians for Social Responsibility, MomsRising, and others which total over 1.5 million people (Henricks, Malkan, Shils, 2014). Utilizing harmful chemicals is an ethical environmental dilemma for AFbecause the current formula has generated incredible revenue. The official website of the company addresses large environmental impact areas such as limiting their carbon emissions, but nothing addresses somethingwhich impacts the environmental on this particular scale.If AF is able to hide these chemicals and still gain their desired sales results then it has little demand to stop acting in this manner. The most important stakeholders surrounding this dilemma are not only the executives and upper management of the company, but also the lowest store employees. A loss in sombre sales will affect most employees in a company, but this situation would directly affect individual store employees.Customers may stay away from the stores in order to avoid the negative side effects resulting in a loss of profit and jobs for store employees.Developing a Globally standardize StrategyCurrently, Abercrombie and Fitch already has an established a globally standardized strategy to cope with the selected dil emmas. The strategy is laid out on a website by the company which was created specifically for displaying the considerate side of AF. covering everything from the sustainability to collaborations to specific policies, AF clearly display their globally standardized strategy to ensure that the highest values of human rights are being upheld at our headquarters, in our stores and within our supply chain (anfcares.org, 2014). AF should have a globally standardized strategy. Even if ethical imperialism is not wise, the specific industry operations call for a globalized solution. Several ethical viewpoints are almost universal for garment manufacturing. Several unethical decisions such as environmental negligence and the use of harmful chemicals have resulted in scandals and dilemmas because of the accessibility of information. For example, the infamous interview with the CEO was conducted years before it gained notoriety. By having a globally standardized strategy, AF could mitigate po tential situations before they arise.The selected dilemmas have global relevance. Inclusion, the rationale dealt with in the social dilemma, is incredibly important to a multitude ofcultures crosswise the world. A store in the Netherlands which openly admitted to not wanting homosexual customers would experience a similar backlash. The environment issues also reaches across borders. Asthma, one of the problems which are heightened by the fragrances, is prevalent in an estimated 300 million people (Aaaai.org, 2014).Abercrombie and Fitchs Actions Compared to UnileverThe actual solutions by AF are not similar to the solutions practiced by Unilever. Both AF and Unilever have explicit codes of conduct and plans to deal with ethical dilemmas which arise. Even though these plans exist, AF has demonstrated that its actions do not always align with their official stance. Unilevers approach to social impact such as gender equality has been greatly documented, and one of their main goals by 2 020 is to help more than 1 billion people improve their health well-being (Vis, 2014). The implementation of this policy is seen as Unilever has helped generate around 65,000 microentrepreneurs (Vis, 2014). A stark contrast exists between Unilevers actions and those of AF. hostile Unilever, the ultimate actions of AF and their refusal to stock larger size clothing proves the company is dedicated to portraying a confirming image without actually helping to make a positive change in society.AFs actions toward their environmental impact align almost with their actions for social justice. Although its official stance is to reduce its environmental footprint, the company has taken no action in light of the protests by environmental groups driven to get rid cyanogenic chemicals from the environment (Lutz, 2013) which are the result of their colognes. Unilevers approach towards economic longevity has been greatly noted as 75% sites send zero waste to landfill (Vis, 2014). Unilevers ap proach is much more preferable to AFs approach. From a social standpoint, Unilevers actions have actively made a beneficial social change as Unilever continues to fulfill their promises. AF continues to ignore their customers plight even though the company claims to truly care. From a corporate standpoint, Unilevers approach is better because many news outlets have cited the company as making a positive change, while AF continues to have controversies resulting in a sales drop of 10%. Overall, Unilever has a much better strategy than AF.Appendix 1Figure 1 Average Monthly net of Asian Countries (Nwpc.dole.gov.ph, 2014)Appendix 2Improvement of the Vietnam Government Policy on FDI (Kim, Lee and Cheong, 2011) The Vietnam government policy for FDI was dramatically improved by registering into WTO (World Trade Organization) and preparing for PNTR (Permanent Normal Trade Relations). Besides, the government adopted global standards, abolished difference of foreigners, and opened the servi ce part such as finance or communication. As a result, FDI into Vietnam broadened to various areas, for example, fabrics, mining, energy, finance, logistic and so on. Especially concluding PNTR between the US made it possible to participating into WTO and promote foreing investors to enter into the Vietnam market. Another important change in the policy is related to the modification of legal restrictions or rules. On 1st of July, 2006, the government changed the original law for FDI which had been adapted only to the local people into the newly modified law for FDI which is commonly adapted to the both parts of foreigners and local people. This was the effort of the government to create more competitive investment conditions which are changing subject of application, and abolishing double price and repatriation tax. Also the government has been modifying the original business law, investment law, land law, and corporate taxation.References1) Aaaai.org 2014, Asthma Statistics AAAAI. online for sale athttp//www.aaaai.org/about-the aaaai/newsroom/asthma-statistics.aspx Accessed 14 May. 2014. 2) Abercrombie and Fitch 2012, Annual report 2012, Abercrombie and Fitch Co., New Albany, Ohio.3) Anfcareers.com 2014, Abercrombie Fitch Careers. online available athttp//www.anfcareers.com/page/Diversity Accessed 15 May. 2014. 4) Anfcares.org 2014, AF Cares Our Strategy. online operational athttp//www.anfcares.org/sustainability/environment/strategy.jsp Accessed 16 May. 2014. 5) Barrie, L. 2010, Abercrombie Fitch sees opportunities in higher costs. online Just-style.com. Available at http//www.just-style.com/ outline/abercrombie-fitch-sees-opportunities-in-highercosts_id109585.aspx Accessed 18 May. 2014. 6) Basu, C. 2014, The Advantages Disadvantages of a Wholly Owned Subsidiary. online eHow. 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