Summary

from 2020 onwards, the children's apparel market will be characterized by a fast-growing online sales sector, representing 16% of the total market and set to rise to 22%. The market, while stable in Europe, shows dynamic growth in the Asia-Pacific region, with France experiencing a slight resurgence to reach a projected value of 3.1 billion euros by 2024, representing a CAGR of 0.64% over the forecast period. Demand is influenced by France's declining fertility rate, an aging population and a growing preference for second-hand clothing due to economic and environmental considerations. The children's clothing market is highly competitive, with a multitude of players including specialist brands, general retailers and e-commerce giants, all striving to differentiate themselves through innovation and customer experience. Children's clothing prices are set to continue their downward trend, driven by a growing supply of profitable clothing from Asian textile-specialized countries, sales promotions and a general reduction in consumer spending on clothing. Regulations guarantee the safety and proper labeling of children's clothing, taking into account composition and non-textile animal components. Market leaders range from mixed-fashion brands like GAP and H&M to familywear brands like Kiabi and specialist children's clothing companies like Okaïdi-Obaïdi.

Trends and dynamics in the children's clothing market

The children's clothing market in the country concerned has seen a variety of trends influencing demand and sales in recent years. The period between 2014 and 2018 showed a fluctuating pattern, with an initial decline followed by a rebound, resulting in a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around -2.82%. However, the children's and babywear market in Europe has shown resilience, reaching an average value of around $44 billion with a forecast to reach around $51 billion by 2024.

In the French context, the children's and babywear market showed a relatively stable nature, despite a slight downward trend. One of the main influences on demand for children's clothing is the fertility rate, which has been on a downward trajectory, falling from around 12.8 births per 1,000 inhabitants to around 11.3 over the decade. At the same time, the total number of births fell from around 833,000 to 758,000, resulting in a significant drop in potential demand for children's clothing. Despite these figures, the children's ready-to-wear segment, particularly for girls, proved robust. Sales of girls' clothing reached almost 1.41 billion euros, compared with around 1.05 billion euros for boys. The economic situation of households and the growing popularity of the second-hand market have led to a paradigm shift in consumption patterns. The dynamics of children's clothing prices also reflect notable trends.

The market is stratified into categories ranging from entry-level to luxury, with brands such as H&M, Jacadi and Gucci Kids, each operating in different price spectrums. Overall, product prices have stagnated or fallen, influenced by factors such as global cotton production and the competitive pricing strategies of e-commerce. In terms of e-commerce development, the sector showed significant momentum, with online platforms becoming an increasingly integral part of retail strategies. This movement is driven both by consumer demand for seamless shopping experiences and by the expanding market share of the e-commerce giants.

Despite fluctuations, a slight drop in fertility rates and an increase in demand, the children's apparel market remains strong

When looking at the landscape of the children's apparel market, several key players emerge, each with their own brand ethos and approach to the market. These companies cater for a diverse customer base and run the gamut, from familiar mass-market brands to specialist children's apparel brands.

Here's a look at some of the most influential entities in this dynamic sector.

  • H&M is a global leader in fast fashion, offering trendy, affordable clothing. With a significant presence in the children's apparel market, H&M offers a wide range of cutting-edge children's clothing, giving parents access to the latest styles without breaking the bank.
  • Zara, part of the Inditex Group, is another fast-fashion giant that extends its chic, European-inspired designs to the younger set. Zara Kids offers fashionable, functional clothing, often echoing the sophisticated, avant-garde themes of the brand's adult collections.

Family clothing brands

  • Kiabi stands out for its slogan "Fashion for the whole family at low prices" In addition to its affordability, Kiabi's wide range, which includes a dedicated children's segment, makes it a benchmark for parents shopping on a budget without compromising on style.
  • IKKS brings a French design perspective to children's fashion, focusing on chic and creative styles. Targeting the high-end segment of the market, IKKS offers a collection that combines contemporary trends with age-appropriate sophistication.
  • C&A is a seasoned player with a holistic approach to family apparel. Its children's clothing line confirms the brand's commitment to quality and value, addressing the family market with a variety of options for children of all ages.

Brands specializing in children's clothing

  • Okaïdi-Obaïbi focuses exclusively on children's fashion and is known for its vibrant designs that capture the essence of childhood. The brand offers a full range of clothing, from everyday wear to more formal options, while guaranteeing comfort and durability.
  • Sergent Major embodies a whimsical and colorful approach to children's clothing. The brand aims to create clothing that reflects a child's imagination and adventures, offering both quality and charm.
  • Petit Bateau is a long-established and renowned French brand.
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  • Number of pages : 30 pages
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  • Last update : 12/06/2023
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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Market definition

The children's apparel market refers to all clothing and fashion accessories for children aged 2 to 14.

The global children's apparel market is growing and is much more dynamic than the adult, men's or women's ready-to-wear markets. While the European and American markets dominate the global market, the Asia Pacific region is booming

In France too, the children's clothing market is one of the most buoyant segments of the relatively stable clothing market. The market is structured around large specialized brands, large generalist retailers and a multitude of specialized independent players

The children's clothing market is benefiting from the popularity of online sales and is investing in increasingly efficient delivery and in-store collection services. The sector's specialist brands are also present on the various online distribution platforms. The share of online sales in the children's clothing market is constantly growing. More globally, it is innovation and digital mastery that allow players to differentiate themselves in a very competitive market where parents must be convinced.

Partly due to the pressure on purchasing power as well as the fashion industry's sensitivity to environmental impacts, the second-hand market is showing growing results. In fact, some brands in the children's clothing market are taking advantage of the trend to launch their own resale platforms

The European market is relatively stable

Children's and baby clothing sales trends and forecasts Europe, ****-*****, USD billion Source: ****

The graph above shows us the evolution of European sales value of children's and baby clothing (***), sales had an annual value of $**.** billion. Between **** and ****, the market has a CAGR of -*.**%, and its average value is $**.** ...

1.3 The French market

Sales trends and forecasts for children's and baby clothing France, ****-*****, billion euros Source: ****

The graph above shows the evolution of national sales value of children's and baby clothing (***), sales had an annual value of €*.** billion. Between **** and ****, the market shows a CAGR of -*.**%, and its average value is *.** billion ...

2 Analysis of the demand

2.1 The impact of the fertility rate on demand

Birth rate in France France, ****-****, in number of births per **** inhabitants Source: ****

The growth dynamics of the French children's apparel market are highly dependent on the annual fertility rate in France. It can be seen that since ****, this rate has been steadily decreasing, as it has gone from **.* births per ...

2.2 The demand for children's ready-to-wear clothing

Demand by gender of the child:

Distribution of the value of sales of children's and baby clothing France, ****, billion euros Source: ****

If we look at the distribution of the value of sales of ready-to-wear for children and babies, we can see that children's ready-to-wear is by far the most important segment ...

2.3 Factors influencing the demand for children's ready-to-wear clothing

The economic situation of households:

The economic situation of French households is significant for the purchase of children's clothing, as greater pressure on purchasing power could cause households to turn to lower-priced products, reduce their frequency of purchase or turn to second-hand products. Demand seems to be evolving in France, as ...

2.4 Les mutations des comportements de consommation sur le marché de l'habillement suite à la crise de la covid-19

Les conséquences de la crise sanitaire ont entraîné une modification des comportements des consommateurs sur le marché de l'habillement. 

Forte croissance du e-commerce :

En ****, les ventes en ligne ont bondi de ***% par rapport à l'année ****, année de référence puisqu'avant la crise sanitaire. De plus, nous pouvons ...

3 Market structure

3.1 Market organization and distribution networks

The children's clothing market is fragmented, with a multitude of different operators. These include:

specialized players that produce and distribute children's clothing almost exclusively and are generally multi-brand; adult fashion companies that market a children's range; mass retail chains of ready-to-wear clothing for the whole family; food superstores with a clothing ...

3.2 The production of children's clothing

Sales growth of leading children's wear specialists France, ****-*****, % source:

If we look at the turnover of the leading brands in the children's ready-to-wear market in France over the period ****-****, we can see a sharp decline between **** and ****, with a loss of *.*%. However, since ****, the evolution of the turnover is ...

3.3 The development of e-commerce

In order to take advantage of the synergies between websites and physical stores, the leading brands in the children's clothing market are increasingly developing omnichannel solutions aimed at offering a linear and coherent experience between the different sales channels (***). For example, many brands such as Sergent Major or Petit Bateau have ...

4 Analysis of the offer

4.1 Variable prices for variable quality products

Children's clothing can be grouped into three main categories:

The "top" clothes, used to be worn to school or simply outside. These include heavy pieces such as coats, jackets, blousons; outerwear such as dresses, pants, or jeans; and small pieces, including t-shirts, sweaters, and tracksuits. Shoes, both sport and casual. Some ...

4.2 The downward trend in clothing prices is expected to continue in the coming years

Consumer prices of baby and children's clothing France, ****-****, base *** in **** Source: ****

If we look at the evolution of the consumer price index for baby and children's clothing over the period ****-****, we see that it has been decreasing since ****, signaling a decline in the price of children's ready-to-wear clothing in ...

4.3 Tendances de l'offre

Le développement du e-commerce

Afin de tirer profit des synergies entre sites internet et magasins physiques, les enseignes leaders du marché de l’habillement pour enfants développent de plus en plus des solutions omnicanales visant à proposer une expérience linéaire et cohérente entre les différents canaux ...

5 Regulation

5.1 Current regulations

Children's safety:

Children's clothing is subject to regulations to ensure the safety of children. They concern the components of children's clothing such as cords and laces, buttons, clasps etc. The standards in force are the following [***] :

NF EN *****: Safety of clothing - cords and drawstrings - specifications ; NF EN *****: Performance levels ...

List of charts

  • Global children's clothing market
  • Trends in the children's clothing market
  • Children's apparel market size
  • Birth rate in France
  • Number of births in France
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Latest news

Discover Ekosport Rent, the new Sport 2000 brand | Explore Ekosport Rent, the new Sport 2000 brand - 29/02/2024
  • - Sport 2000 has launched a new mountain brand, Ekosport Rent, for the 2023-2024 winter season.
  • - 32 Ekosport Rent outlets have been opened for this winter.
  • - The sales mix of these stores is 60-65% rental and 35-40% sales.
  • - Sport 2000's objective is to open a further 20-30 stores next season, and eventually to reach a network of around 100 Ekosport Rent stores.
  • - Sport 2000 currently has 241 stores in ski resorts.
4.5% growth for Sport 2000 in 2023 thanks to new openings - 27/02/2024
  • Sport 2000 Group sales in 2023 were 841 million euros.
  • - Sales were up 4.5% on the previous year.
  • - 65% of sales came from the Sport 2000 brand network.
  • - The total number of Sport 2000 stores in 2023 was 710.
  • - Sport 2000's ambition is to generate sales of 1 billion euros by 2028.
Kiabi's resilience in the face of the textile crisis - 24/01/2024
  • Kiabi is 45 years old and belongs to the Mulliez galaxy.
  • Kiabi posted sales of 2.2 billion euros last year, up 1%
  • kiabi claims 23 million customers in 26 countries.
  • Kiabi has 606 points of sale and 15-20% of its sales are made online.
  • The brand is number 1 in France in terms of volume, and vies for first place with Intersport in terms of value every year.
  • It has attracted 1 million new customers with the launch of its second-hand service in 2020.
  • The debt-free Kiabi continues to expand, recently entering markets in Uruguay, New Caledonia and Egypt.
  • Kiabi plans to become the world's "favorite responsible and accessible fashion brand for families
  • The company has never deviated from its strategy of offering "fashion at low prices".
  • Kiabi has also launched corners in hypermarkets in Belgium, Italy and France, as well as tests at Decathlon.
  • Kiabi is testing clothing rental in three stores.
Kiabi imagines its store of the future | Imagining the store of tomorrow - 22/11/2023
  • Kiabi has a pilot store in Petite-Forêt, near Valenciennes
  • The store features a "service heart", a space in the middle of the store for customers to relax and take part in activities.
  • The Kiabi brand has sales of 2.2 billion euros for 2022, up 10% on the previous year.
  • Kiabi is also testing this new store concept in Madrid, Spain. Kiabi plans to roll out the new concept across its network of 579 stores in 25 countries, almost half of which are in France.
Intersport plans to sell around thirty of its stores - 07/11/2023
  • Around thirty Intersport stores could be sold to Schiever.
  • Intersport is France's second-largest sporting goods retailer.
  • Intersport is a cooperative of nearly 300 entrepreneurs.
  • The Intersport network comprises some 800 specialist stores.
  • Jacky Rihouet, CEO of Intersport, may sell 20 Intersport stores and five Intersport outlets that he owns.
  • Four Blackstore ready-to-wear stores and two Go Sport stores could also be sold to Schiever.
For its 130th anniversary, Petit Bateau modernizes its Troyes factory - 26/10/2023
  • Petit Bateau has 450 employees in Troyes and 2,500 worldwide,
  • Petit Bateau has a second factory in Marrakech, Morocco, and works with subcontractors in Tunisia, Europe, Asia and the Indian Ocean.
  • The French market accounts for over 50% of sales, which are forecast to reach 270 million euros by 2022.
  • Its two other key markets are Japan (10% of sales) and Italy.

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

GAP
Inditex groupe (Zara)
Kiabi Europe
IKKS
C&A France
Générale pour l'enfant Groupe (Sergent Major)
Petit Bateau
Intersport France
Idkids Groupe
Jacadi (Idkids groupe)
Sport 2000
GEMO (Eram Groupe)

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