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June 11, 2021

Is the apparel sector seeing an AI investment boom?

AI deals, jobs and patents have been booming in the last few years – but is the apparel sector keeping up?

By Leonie Barrie

The apparel industry is seeing an increase in artificial intelligence (AI) investment across several key metrics, according to an analysis of GlobalData data.

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How can brands navigate the post-COVID-19 Apparel market?

In 2021, the Global Apparel market remained at 3% below pre-pandemic levels, with Europe and LATAM lagging behind. If they want to see full recovery, brands must look ahead. GlobalData is therefore offering this free report, Future of the Apparel Market Post Pandemic, to assist companies in adapting to the future market. This report explores the following topics:
  • Latest forecasts for the online apparel market out to 2025
  • How different regions and categories will perform, including which regions are lagging behind and which are performing at pre-pandemic levels
  • Which categories within the Apparel market are displaying resilience
  • Which brands are driving online spending
  • Impact of inflation on the Global Apparel market
  • What the biggest trends are that apparel businesses must adopt to succeed
Read our report on the Future of the Apparel Market Post Pandemic to gain valuable insights on how to best position your brand in a post-COVID-19 world.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

AI is gaining an increasing presence across multiple sectors, with top companies completing more AI deals, hiring for more AI roles and mentioning it more frequently in company reports at the start of 2021.

GlobalData’s thematic approach to sector activity seeks to group key company information on hiring, deals, patents and more by topic to see which companies are best placed to weather the disruptions coming to their industries.

These themes, of which AI is one, are best thought of as “any issue that keeps a CEO awake at night,” and by tracking them it becomes possible to ascertain which companies are leading the way on specific issues and which are dragging their heels.

According to this method, LVMH, Nike, Foot Locker are classed as dominant players in AI in the sector, with an additional eight companies classified as leaders. No companies are considered to be vulnerable due to a lack of investment in AI.

One area in which there has seen little movement in AI investment among apparel companies is in the number of deals. GlobalData show that there were two AI deals in apparel in the first quarter of 2019 – the same as the first quarter of 2021.

Hiring patterns within the apparel sector as a whole are pointing towards an increase in the level of attention being shown to AI-related roles. There was a monthly average of 7,435 actively advertised-for open AI roles within the industry in April this year, up from a monthly average of 5,703 in December 2020.

It is also apparent from an analysis of keyword mentions in financial filings that AI is occupying the minds of apparel companies to a lesser extent.

There have been 30 mentions of AI across the filings of the biggest apparel companies so far in 2021, equating to 19.2% of all tech theme mentions. This figure represents a decrease compared to 2016, when AI represented 46.8% of the tech theme mentions in company filings.

AI is increasingly fuelling innovation in the apparel sector, particularly in the past six years. There were, on average, 2.9 apparel patents related to AI granted each year from 2000 to 2014. That figure has risen to an average of 7.9 patents since then, reaching 12 in 2020.

Related Companies

Free Report
img

How can brands navigate the post-COVID-19 Apparel market?

In 2021, the Global Apparel market remained at 3% below pre-pandemic levels, with Europe and LATAM lagging behind. If they want to see full recovery, brands must look ahead. GlobalData is therefore offering this free report, Future of the Apparel Market Post Pandemic, to assist companies in adapting to the future market. This report explores the following topics:
  • Latest forecasts for the online apparel market out to 2025
  • How different regions and categories will perform, including which regions are lagging behind and which are performing at pre-pandemic levels
  • Which categories within the Apparel market are displaying resilience
  • Which brands are driving online spending
  • Impact of inflation on the Global Apparel market
  • What the biggest trends are that apparel businesses must adopt to succeed
Read our report on the Future of the Apparel Market Post Pandemic to gain valuable insights on how to best position your brand in a post-COVID-19 world.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

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