The Industry looks at how the recession provides businesses with the space to gain ground on competitors.

When the British news is awash with stories of unprecedented job cuts and slumping sales figures, fashion businesses are tending to sit tight; reducing spending and consequently innovation.

‘During a downturn the knee-jerk reaction is to only focus on salvaging the business, making sales or cutting overheads. Creativity can lead to better times and does not have to be costly,’ recently said David Watts, designer business support manager at the British Fashion Council.

When Aquascutum collapsed into administration earlier this year, its great rival Burberry posted an 11% rise in sales. Both renowned for their signature trench coats, Aquascutum has a far stronger heritage than Burberry yet retail analysts believed that they failed to capitalise on it in the same way; evidence enough that a recession gives innovative companies the chance to leap frog their opponents and take their market share.

Whilst others are holding back on marketing efforts and new product launches, a tough economic climate gets companies thinking creatively to get buyers attention. Using the economic downturn as an opportunity to move your business forward, constructive innovation strategies can both reduce the bottom whilst increasing the top line – a win win formula.