Top 10 Apparel Brands of 2019

The highly anticipated Apparel 50 report examines the profit margin of the industry's top public manufacturers and retailers and ranks them. The following is a look at the top brands on the list.

In this year’s Top 50 report — an annual ranking of the most profitable apparel companies, with at least $100 million in sales and that trade on the U.S. stock exchange — we find the leading companies more smartly putting technology to work across their supply chains to better meet the unprecedented pace of changing consumer demands and expectations.

It hasn’t been all that many years since consumers started shopping online and on mobile devices in force, but when they did, the game changed, and retailers have been playing catch-up. Many of them are getting closer to meeting customers where they are, and where they want their product to be. You can see, among the most successful apparel players, that the omnichannel mindset has taken hold. Retailers know that to serve the consumer, they must understand her journey across physical and digital locations. They are understanding that each channel has unique opportunities to serve the consumer, and that, when combined together well, digital and brick-and-mortar are a potent force for attracting engagement and loyalty. 

Nike’s CEO, Mark Parker, put it well during the company’s most recent year-end earnings call in June. “The digital opportunity alone is tremendous,” he said. “But just as promising is how digital and physical environments are intersecting and amplify each other. Our most effective test case thus far has been the Nike app at retail, which links features of the Nike app to our physical retail experiences. The Nike app at retail is live in over 30 doors across the U.S., the UK and France. And we’ll be scaling considerably throughout fiscal year ‘20, including in select factory stores.”

Without further ado, CGT highlights the top 10 apparel manufacturers on the 2019 list (representing manufacturers that sell products through other retailers in addition to their own stores):

1. Canada Goose
Known for producing extreme weather outerwear, Canada Goose has been developing its markets internationally, with revenue up by 36.3% in the U.S., and by 60.5% in the rest of the world, including its expansion into Greater China, the world’s largest luxury market. (Canada Goose also ranks No. 1 on the full list.)

2. Lululemon athletica
Lululemon athletica, a perennial top-of-the-charter, comes in at No. 2 this year. In fiscal 2018 (ended Feb. 3), the company reported its net revenue was up 24.1% to $3.3 billion. (Lululemon athletica also ranks No. 2 on the full list.)

3. Capri Holdings Limited (formerly Michael Kors)
Known for its Jimmy Choo and Michael Kors brands, Capri Holdings Limited comes in at No. 3 on our list this year. In fiscal 2019 (ended March 30), the company acquired Versace and rose net revenue 11% to $5.2 billion. (Capri Holdings Limited ranks No. 7 on the full list.)

4. Nike
The iconic sports brand has made an investment in its manufacturing capabilities this past year by adding a Nike Air manufacturing center in the U.S. “The consumer demand for Nike Air is currently outpacing supply,” said Parker. “This investment will help us better meet that demand and accelerate new innovations for one of our most distinct platforms.” (Nike ranks No. 5 on the full list.)

5. Columbia Sportswear
The outdoor apparel and footwear company jumps up to No. 5 this year. In fiscal 2018 (ended Dec. 31, 2018), Columbia’s net revenue was up 13.6% to $2.8 billion. (Columbia Sportswear ranks No. 10 on the full list.)

6. VF Corp.
Not surprisingly, global behemoth VF Corp. makes our list again, this year coming in at No. 6. In fiscal 2018 (ended March 30), the company reported net revenue was up 17.3% to $13.8 billion. The company’s brands include Dikies, Lee, Wrangler, Timberland, Vans and The North Face. (VF Corp. ranks No. 11 on the full list.)

7. Carter’s
In fiscal 2018 (ended Dec. 31, 2018), the baby apparel brand reported a 1.82% rise in net sales to $3.4 billion. Nearly 90% of millennials shopping for newborn apparel in the U.S. purchased the Carter’s brand last year, according to the company. (Carter's ranks No. 12 on the full list.)

8. Hanesbrands
The company nabs the No. 8 spot on our list. In fiscal 2018 (ended Dec. 29, 2018), Hanesbrands reported its net revenue rose 13.6% to $6.8 billion. (Hanesbrands ranks No. 13 on the full list.)

9. PVH Corp.
In fiscal 2018 (ended Feb. 3), the company reported an 8.32% rise in net revenue to $9.7 billion. The company’s portfolio of brands include Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and Van Heusen. (PVH Corp. ranks No. 15 on the full list.)

10. Ralph Lauren
In fiscal 2019 (ended March 30), the luxury and designer apparel company reported a 2.11% rise in net revenue to $6.3 billion. (Ralph Lauren ranks No. 17 on the full list.)

To view the full Apparel Top 50 report, click here