Strategic Management: SWOT Analysis for Gap Inc.

Introduction

Gap Inc is one of the most reputed brands in the world. The company is specialized in providing branded fashion accessories to customers. Gap Inc is specialized in the cloth business. The company was established in the year 1969. “The Company is a global specialty retailer operating retail and outlet stores selling casual apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men, women and children under the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, and Forth & Towne brands.” (The Gap Inc).

Excellent branding strategy is one of the success factors of the company. This report is a detailed description of the SWOT analysis of Gap Inc. This report is highly helpful in analyzing the strategies of the company and also to analyze the shortfalls of the company in terms of its strategies.

Main body

This portion of the report deals with the SWOT analysis of Gap Inc. A SWOT analysis will give a proper analysis of various aspects of a company.

Strength

The strength of Gap Inc is that it has a very good brand value in the market. The company introduces products in the market in various brand names such as Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, and Forth & Towne brands. Since the products are launched in the market in various brands there is an assurance of the quality of the brand. “Gap Inc. is constantly challenging itself to think about what the customer wants, not what other stores are selling.” (Levy &Hernandez, 1999-2008).

The strength of the brands is that all the brands supply products of distinctive nature. Thus the customers can distinguish between the different brands. These branding strategies of Gap helped the company to carve a niche in the apparel market in the US and many other countries. Its presence in countries outside the US is another big strength of the company. Through its widespread presence in many countries, the company can sell more of its products worldwide.

Weakness

One of the weaknesses of Gap is the extreme focus that it gave on a particular class of customers. At times Gap attempted to give a youth image for the product. Later on, it framed strategies to transform such images through its advertisements. Thus Gap didn’t have a consistent image building. Thus the company lost many valuable customers from the market. Another weakness of the company is the poor marketing strategies that it carried on during the tenure of CEO Paul Pressler. Paul Pressler being an inexperienced hand in the apparel business drove the business to losses in many areas. Thus the poor hiring of management personnel was one of the weaknesses of Gap Inc.

Opportunities

The opportunities of Gap Inc are the market that is still untapped by the company. Though the company has its presence in many countries there are still many countries where the company still needs to present. The company should utilize the potential of those markets for maximizing its profits. Since Gap Inc has a good brand value, entering the new market is not a tough task for it. The improved marketing strategy is another opportunity for Gap Inc. Gap Inc has formulated strategies for focusing on customers of all age groups. “Building a clothing brand from scratch is always a challenge. But Chief Executive Paul S. Pressler is betting that Gap Inc. can do it again.” (Can Gap Do It Again, 2004). Threats:

Like any other business, the major threat of Gap Inc is its competitors. Gap faces stiff competition from other major apparel producers of the country. The major competitors of Gap Inc are Abercrombie & Fitch Co., American Eagle Outfitters Inc, and J. Crew Group, Inc. All the above three retailers are very much specialized in the sector and provide equally competent products to the customers. It is a threat for Gap Inc as it will lead to a reduction in the market share of Gap Inc. Another worst threat for Gap Inc is the poor marketing strategies that are framed during the tenure of CEO Paul Pressler.

Conclusion

This report has given a deep insight into the SWOT analysis of Gap Inc. Gap Inc is one of the market leaders in the apparel market of the world. For the company to be even more successful in the long run it has to get rid of all its weaknesses and should properly deal with the threats affecting it. A better distribution channel must be established for the company to ensure a better presence in world markets.

References

The Gap Inc: Company Information, The New York times: Business. Web.

Levy, Mitchell., &Hernandez, Anna. (1999-2008). Gap Analyzed via the Value Framework: Strategy managed, VMS3.info: Feature Article. Web.

Can Gap Do It Again, (2004). BusinessWeek. Web.