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Ministry of Supply

Essay by   •  June 5, 2019  •  Case Study  •  731 Words (3 Pages)  •  91 Views

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What have been some of the key reasons that MoS has been able to establish itself so quickly in the men’s professional fashion space?

  • During MoS’ research the company founders  “saw a poorly served segment in the market of active, urban professionals that needed to wear business clothing to work, but preferred to wear comfortable athletic wear given the choice”. Thus, they could identify an unmet need in a niche market which was not being targeted by any incumbents.
  • It fulfilled the need of comfortable business wear by combining the high-performance athletic apparel with professional market. Moreover, men’s clothing industry was not subjected to innovation which gave new firms with innovative products to grow easily due to their competitive advantage of comfort and performance.
  • MoS focused on launching one single product and refining it by developing several  alternatives to the product and receiving constant feedbacks on those to align more to the customer’s needs.
  • Kickstarter’s evangelists also played a role in creating word-of-mouth, buzz and in defending the product was good and fulfilled its marketed characteristics – superior performance and comfort. The evangelists started to share their stories with their personal networks and helped create a pool of loyal customers, changing MoS’ status from unknown to receiving several e-mails per day.
  • By focusing the niche market with just one product ‘Apollo’ which allowed multiple repurchases at lower value than traditional tailored suits, they could achieve higher Customer Lifetime Value.

What key choices have they made that allowed them to attract customers while avoiding a direct competitive response (at least so far) from more established players in this space?

  • They ran a small batch test of shirts using different types of fabrics in the market to assess and get feedbacks about the actual needs of consumers. By constant interaction and focus on one product the company was able to perfect the product and thus make it harder for competitors to imitate easily.
  • The product development was a mix of science and technology, which was another reason for making it difficult to imitate.
  • The products offered by MoS differentiated from those of incumbents’ as they appealed to a niche market of young and urban professionals. Thus, the incumbents were less bothered.
  • The company started with selling their products online through a dedicated website, which in 2011 was not a huge medium for clothing sales. However, this turned out to be immensely advantageous for MoS as the customers could then buy anything they wanted anytime, as for them “the store is always open”.

Given their strategy and approach so far, what are the benefits and costs of a brick-and-mortar channel?

Benefits associated with brick-and-mortar channel:

  • Closer interaction with clients, feedback in real time are more reliable and easier to identify. As opposed to online customer reviews where the genuineness of reviews is unidentifiable, physical stores could provide more valuable information which the company could adapt more quickly and work on.
  • The benefits of running a physical store include observing the customer’s buying behavior and assess its main concerns, helping identify what drives their purchases, which would be necessary to make the product more successful and appealing.
  • The conversion rates are way higher in physical stores as compared to online medium because customers can interact with retail staff and physically touch and feel the clothes’ quality and fit to better understand the features and value proposition of the product.
  • Buying from a physical is more convenient in terms of exchange or returns as through website purchase, the process of exchange/return could be cumbersome.

Costs associated with brick-and-mortar channel:



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