The company was established in the year 1948 in the form of a small store in London dealing with wool and ladies’ clothing. As the business expanded, the company started to focus only on ladies’ clothing and came to be known as ‘Lewis Separates’. By the year 1968, the company had around 70 stores in the UK. At the same time, Lewis Separates opened up a few new concept stores with innovative designs and formats that were known as ‘Chelsea Girl’. Chelsea Girl was the foremost fashion boutique chain in the UK. In the year 1983, the company came up with men’s wear under the name ‘Concept Man’. Nevertheless, as a result of further progression, in 1988 the company evolved into theme store offering footwear, cosmetics, accessories, and men’s as well as women’s clothing and came to be known as ‘River Island’ (Competition Commission, 2004. Lea-Greenwood, 1993).This section of the study would focus on the environmental analysis which would comprise an assessment of the Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, and Legal atmosphere affecting the United Kingdom where River Island is headquartered (Havergal amp. Edmonstone, 1999. Learn Marketing, n.d.).The United Kingdom offers a relatively stable domestic political environment to River Island. However, developed nations like the UK cannot contend with the developing countries in terms of low-cost manufacturing facilities and cheap labor. The regulations of the European Union impact the apparel industry of the UK in terms of minimum remunerations, fixed working hours, and imports from across the EU boundary (Key Note, 2001).The economic environment of the UK would have an imperative impact on apparel stores like River Island. The rise in the prices of real estate particularly in the prime sites ofthe region might decelerate the store extension activity of River Island or might result in a decrease in the floor space of the new stores.
Strategy and the Management of Change