Fashion Sector

An Expert's View about Textiles, Apparel and Accessories in Costa Rica

Posted on: 1 Dec 2012

Companies including Forever 21, Gap and Banana Republic recently announced they will be opening stores or concessions in November 2013.

Fashion Sector In Costa Rica San José is ranked 4th of Latin America cities for its high quality of life*. Costa Ricans familiar with international fashion houses are increasingly demanding more fashion labels Market overview Costa Rica has enjoyed a stable economic growth over the last few decades and as such has attracted one of the highest levels of foreign direct investment per capita in Latin America. The fashion retail industry in Costa Rica is prominent, some of the most recognised brands in- country include: Massimo Dutti, Carolina Herrera, Tommy Hilfiger, Hugo Boss, Salvatore Ferragamo, Zara, Tiffany, Cartier, Max Mara, and Christian Dior. Additionally, companies including Forever 21, Gap and Banana Republic recently announced they will be opening stores or concessions in November 2013. El Salvadorian owned department store Siman Corporation also reported a new alliance with the Spanish group Inditex, and its intentions to bring Bershka, Pull & Bear, Stradivarius and Oysho brands into the market soon. In Costa Rica the majority of retail is focused on malls, generally located on the outskirts of large towns and cities, following the American trend. 90% of Costa Ricans visit malls on a weekly basis especially during the weekend*. As a result of this trend, there was an increase of 34% between the first semester of 2011 and the first semester of 2012 on the total square metres built on malls in the country. Key opportunities The Association Agreement between the European Union and Central America could be used as a platform to bring in British brands to the market, and make them more visible and aspirational to Costa Ricans. There is a market for high-brand accessories. Perfumes, makeup or different accessories from high fashion houses could prove successful, giving the shoppers the brand name without necessarily having to pay the prices of the newest and most expensive collections. Several new malls are opening in the Central valley, giving the possibility for British brands to establish concept stores in those, or selling their products by well-known multiband stores. Latest export opportunities in Clothing, Footwear & Fashion Latest export opportunities in Costa Rica Getting into the market When conducting business in Costa Rica we recommend you invest in local representation in the form of an agent or distributor; this is a relatively small market where personal relationships are important. The most important criteria in selecting the local representation is to know their logistic capability – how quickly they can get new lines into the market and react to what is and isn´t selling well. Costa Rica has a well-developed legal system, which is independent of the executive branch of the government. Expert legal advice is recommended at the early stages of any investment study. More about doing business in Costa Rica Contacts Market intelligence is critical when doing business overseas, and UKTI can provide bespoke market research and support during overseas visits though our chargeable Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS). To commission research or for general advice about the market, get in touch with our specialists in country - or contact your local international trade team. ξ Kate Cruse, British Embassy San José. Tel: (506) 2258 2025 or email: ξ Patricia Amrhein, British Embassy San José. Tel: (506) 2258 2025 or email: UKTI Events UKTI runs a range of events for exporters, including seminars in the UK, trade missions to overseas markets and support for attendance at overseas trade shows. Latest events in Clothing, Footwear & Fashion sector Major Events Costa Rica Fashion Week Date: August 2013 Useful links More about OMIS and other UKTI services for exporters
Posted: 01 December 2012