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Comprehensive SWOT Analysis of Supreme – A Well-Known American Streetwear Brand

by | Case Studies | 0 comments

Previously we did the elaborated marketing strategy of one of the leading sports brands Puma, this time we will look at the SWOT analysis of Supreme.

Supreme is a skateboarding lifestyle and American clothing established in April 1994 in New York City. Back in 2018, Supreme received an award as the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s Menswear Designer of the Year Award.

Supreme is a very big company because of its marketing tips and tricks and as the world is shifting online the marketing techniques are changing which is digital marketing. As the world goes online, marketing is changing and if you are interested in learning about the latest – check out our  Free MasterClass on Digital Marketing 101 by the CEO and Founder of IIDE, Karan Shah.

Before we begin with the SWOT analysis of Supreme, here’s a deep dive into the company’s history, founding, products, financial status, competitors.

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About Supreme

SWOT Analysis of Supreme - James Jebbia, founder of Supreme

(James Jebbia, founder of Supreme, Source: Google Images)

Supreme is a well-known American streetwear brand that generally targets youth culture, mainly on hip hop and skateboarding cultures established in New York City.

It is a brand that offers clothes, shoes, accessories and manufactures skateboards as well. It is owned by VF Corporation. The founder of Supreme named James Jebbia reveals that the famous propaganda art logo is taken through the work of Barbara Kruger which is the Supreme having Futura Heavy Oblique font printed on red box logo leading to lawsuits to another women’s street clothing due to closed similarities. 

However, Kruger still insists that he originally designed it. It has released new products through its retail locations in different areas such as Europe, America, and Japan as well as to their websites. The brand’s popularity spreads throughout Japan, China, the United States, and Europe.

Quick Stats on Supreme
Founder James Jebbia
Year Founded 1994
Origin New York City, United States
No. of Employees 10,000+
Company Type Private
Market Cap $ 1 Billion
Annual Revenue $ 500 Million
Net Income/ Profit $ 20 Million

 

Products of Supreme

Stylish,Skateboarding,Outfit,And,Accessories,With,Longboard/skateboard,,Backpack,And,Jacket

(Supreme Range of Products, Source: Luxury Viewer)

Since it was established, Supreme has maintained its image of authenticity. The customers are obsessed because for them, Supreme is more than just being a brand. The following products have been a signature that makes the company popular to its customers. These are:

  • Supreme Accessories
  • Supreme Hats
  • Supreme Hoodies and Sweats
  • Supreme Outerwear
  • Supreme Shoes
  • Supreme Tees


Competitors of Supreme

Supreme competes globally as it launches its products worldwide. Its main competitors are:

  • Abercrombie & Fitch
  • JD Williams & Company
  • BestSecre
  • Shoes.com

After understanding the core of the company, let us now proceed to the SWOT analysis of Supreme. 


SWOT Analysis of Supreme

Examining internal and external factors is the objective of the SWOT analysis of Supreme. The company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats are the four aspects analyzed in the SWOT Analysis of Supreme. This is a tool that reveals the areas that need to improve, what factors are holding back a certain business, or even the consequences of not considering the competitors. 

To better understand the SWOT analysis of Supreme, refer to the infographic below:

SWOT Analysis of Supreme - SWOT Infographics of Supreme

So let us first start by looking at the strengths of Supreme from the SWOT analysis of Supreme.

Strengths of Supreme

  • High-end Quality of Products: Supreme has maintained its authenticity to its fans from a small store to a high-end company. Its products are produced with utmost quality since it is more than a brand.
  • A Veteran of the Brand: Supreme was established in 1994 making it a veteran in terms of streetwear and skateboard clothing. This adds to the originality of the brand since they pioneered the style in the clothing industry.
  • Hype by Approval From Celebrities: Aside from their products, Supreme skyrocketed in the market thanks to celebrities wearing the brand. They have invested less in promoting the products because those celebrities themselves gave an impact on the popularity of the brand.
  • The Uniqueness of Stores: The store has minimalist aesthetic cultivation. It has incorporated a sleek interior design that captures customers’ attention. They also posted different arts on the wall making it an artsy shop. The store also maintains its roomy environment since it is not suffocated with a bunch of inventories and supplies. 

SWOT Analysis of Supreme - Supreme’s Milan Flagship Store
     (Supreme’s Milan Flagship Store, Source: mme.hu)

  • Fully-operating Websites: Supreme has established its website for the convenience of its customers. Customers can avoid fake supreme products when they buy from the official website of Supreme. They also have customer support for their queries and concerns. This helps them to associate virtually with their customers. 
  • Social Media Presence: Aside from its website, they have also promoted their brand through Facebook. It is considered a strength because the number of Facebook users is enormous and it opens a larger market for the brand. This also contributes to their promotion since many have access to the said social media.

Bonus Tip: As you can see from the last 2 bulletins, how having an official website & social media presence can work effectively for brands like Supreme. So, if you also want to learn today’s in-demand marketing methods like social media marketing, WordPress, Facebook & Instagram Ads then do check out IIDE 13+ short term courses in digital marketing for the same.


Weaknesses of Supreme

  • Expensive Prices: Authenticity is the main branding of Supreme. However, due to its popularity, the prices seemed to rise as well. From the price of its t-shirts and hoodies, it is much higher than the other competitors such as H & M which also offers this kind of style. 
  • Lack of Promotion & Brand Awareness: Supreme, given the net worth, still has no allotted budget for its marketing and advertising. It just relies on collaboration within famous brands and indulging the celebrities’ approval of the brand. Marketing must be dynamic and innovative which should be kept in mind every time. 
  • Limited Inventory: To sustain its authenticity and quality, the company opted to limit its inventory and was afraid to fill the stocks. It is a weakness of the brand because most of the time the stock is sold out which causes customer dissatisfaction and at the same time can damage the company’s reputation. 


Opportunities for Supreme

  • Increasing Social Media Presence: Supreme has the option to increase its social media presence by establishing an official account, specifically on Twitter. 
  • Online Availability: Online presence is a plus factor for every company associating virtually. Supreme may increase its online availability to its website and social media accounts to further connect to its customers online. 
  • Formulating Advertisements: Allotting the budget to its promotion in terms of advertisements is an opportunity for the company to focus on. Even though they are benefitting from their current fame, there is a possibility that a time may come where they will need the power of advertising. 
  • Making the Brand a Household Name: Due to its popularity, the company has the option to level its brand into a household name giving them more identity.


Threats to Supreme

  • Tough Competition: Various competitors are dominating the market. These businesses give customers different preferences by offering a cheaper price with the same style as the products offered by Supreme.
  • Threats of Mass Production: The brand will lose its “hype” in case they decide to mass-produce their products. They need to stick to their limited edition promotion which hinders them to provide all the demands of their customers. 
  • Threats to Departing from Underground Style to Commercialization: Conversion into commercialization may lose many hard-core fans of the brand. Its uniqueness comes from the rarity of these clothes. If the brand is commercialized, fewer people would prefer the brand since it will be considered as common.

This ends our broadly covered SWOT analysis of Supreme. Let us conclude our learning below.

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To Conclude

Uniqueness and authenticity are what make the Supreme rose to the hall of fame. However, given the popularity, they should still invest in advertisements and promotion. Opportunities such as increasing online accounts and availability should also be maximized. 

The company must also develop strategies to minimize the aftermath impact of risks of competitors, production, and commercialization. Truly, Supreme is a successful clothing company and they must retain it through innovation and development. 

Lack of marketing will later affect the company in its operation as a whole. Given the online presence made by Supreme, they can have the capacity to venture into digital marketing to minimize their weakness in terms of advertising. Lots of competitors have been into marketing lately. 

Digital technology is also emerging, thus, the need for digital marketing is elevated throughout the years. If you are interested in grasping a skill or investing in upgrading your skills in marketing, feel free to check out IIDE’s 3 Month Advanced Online Digital Marketing Course to know more.

We hope this blog on the SWOT analysis of Supreme has given you a good insight into the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

If you enjoy in-depth company research just like the SWOT analysis of Supreme, check out our IIDE Knowledge portal for more fascinating case studies.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and do share your thoughts on this case study of the SWOT analysis of Supreme in the comments section below.

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]

Aditya Shastri

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