UK fast-fashion retailer Primark will open its first U.S. store in Boston Thursday.
Photograph by Boston Globe/Getty Images
By Laura Lorenzetti
September 9, 2015

British fast fashion is invading the U.S.

Primark, the U.K.’s version of a Forever 21 or H&M, is opening its first store across the pond in Boston’s Downtown Crossing Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Primark is known for its very low-price garments, which can cost less than a Chipotle burrito. Dresses cost about $7.80, necklaces about $3 and men’s blazers go for under $40. It’s become a household name in the U.K., becoming the nation’s largest clothing and accessories retailer by number of items sold.

Now the retailer is taking on the U.S., which is the world’s largest clothing market. The 77,000-square-foot store will cover four floors and offer the same low-cost, high-volume clothing that’s made it successful at home.

Primark’s prices will be about 20% less than Forever 21, 33% below Old Navy and almost 40% less than H&M, according to an analysis by investment firm Sanford C. Bernstein.

How does Primark do that? It’s all about massive volume. Primark said it recently sold 10,000 pairs of jeans at about £8 each from its Tottenham Court Road store in London. That kind of volume puts Primark’s global net sales per selling square foot well above other fast-fashion retailers, according to a Nomura analysis.


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