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August 9, 2022

Artificial intelligence mentions in fashion company filings down in Q2

We've analysed companies' annual reports and other filings to see which key issues are receiving the most attention.

By Data Journalism Team

Mentions of artificial intelligence within the filings of companies in the fashion industry fell 36% between the first and second quarters of 2022.

In total, the frequency of sentences related to artificial intelligence between July 2021 and June 2022 was 4% lower than in 2016 when GlobalData, from whom our data for this article is taken, first began to track the key issues referred to in company filings.

When fashion and accessories companies publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. Artificial intelligence is one of these topics - companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.

To assess whether artificial intelligence is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of fashion and accessories companies, two measures were calculated. Firstly, we looked at the percentage of companies which have mentioned artificial intelligence at least once in filings during the past twelve months - this was 50% compared to 35% in 2016. Secondly, we calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to artificial intelligence.

Of the 10 biggest employers in the fashion industry, Levi Strauss was the company which referred to artificial intelligence the most between July 2021 and June 2022. GlobalData identified 26 artificial intelligence-related sentences in the United States-based company's filings - 0.3% of all sentences. Hermes mentioned artificial intelligence the second most - the issue was referred to in 0.07% of sentences in the company's filings. Other top employers with high artificial intelligence mentions included Christian Dior, Gildan and Pou Chen.

Across all fashion and accessories companies the filing published in the second quarter of 2022 which exhibited the greatest focus on artificial intelligence came from Hermes. Of the document's 7,023 sentences, five (0.1%) referred to artificial intelligence.

This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on artificial intelligence and how important the issue is considered within the fashion industry, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning artificial intelligence more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company's ventures into artificial intelligence have been successes or failures.

GlobalData also categorises artificial intelligence mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these subthemes, the most commonly referred to topic in the second quarter of 2022 was 'context-aware computing', which made up 50% of all artificial intelligence subtheme mentions by fashion and accessories companies.

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