DATA

THE PROS:

Unfortunately, we don’t have anything we felt fit in this section.  Let us know if you do in the comments.

THE CONS:

In May 2014, Racked reported that Forever 21 had introduced a new concept called F21 Red. The brand created a cheaper version of their already-extremely-cheap stores with prices starting as low as $1.80.

Forever 21 shares no information about its suppliers or supply chain.

The brand’s Social Responsibility tab hasn’t been updated since 2011/2012.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor in 2012, they found that Forever 21 clothing is being produced in “sweatshop-like conditions” by workers in Los Angeles-area factories.

 

/ In June 2016, Sourcing Journal reported that Forever 21 had managed to rack up tens of millions of pounds in pre-tax losses in its locations in the U.K. The article implied that the brand was having financial issues and had to close a number of its store-fronts. Sourcing Journal also reported that Forever 21 had been paying its vendors late and may have been looking for a $150 million loan.

/ According to Forbes, Forever 21 has over 600 stores worldwide. According to the Forever 21 website, they plan to open an additional 600 stores by 2017.

/ According to Forbes the brand has $4.4 billion in revenues, and 30,000 employees.

/ In 2014 Forever 21 introduced a new concept called F21 Red. According to Racked, the brand created an “even cheaper version of their already-extremely-cheap stores” with prices starting as low as $1.80.

/ According to Forbes, Forever 21 has been sued more than 50 times in the last 30-some years, mainly for copy infringement.

 

/ Forever 21 shares no information about its suppliers or supply chain.

/ There is no information communicated about whether or not the brand is having a minimal negative social and environmental impact.

/ There is no information about what the brand is doing to improve social conditions in their supply chains.

/ In April 2016, The Fashion Transparency Index gave Forever 21 a “Low Rating”. This rating means that “Little to no evidence that the company has more than a Code of Conduct in place. The company is making little effort towards being transparent about their supply chain practices.”

/ Forever 21 has a code of conduct but it is not publicly available

/ The brand’s Social Responsibility tab hasn’t been updated since 2011/2012.

/ According to Ecouterre in 2014, the brand top the list of fashion labels that regularly failed China’s quality and safety trials.

/ The brand sells sandblasted products and does not have a policy against sandblasting.

/ The brand is accused of fueling modern day slavery according to a report by Not for Sale.

/ According to the U.S. Department of Labor in 2012, they found that Forever 21 clothing is being produced in “sweatshop-like conditions” by workers in Los Angeles-area factories.

 

 

 

/ We don’t have any information on whether or not the brand invests in any sustainable material innovations.

/ PETA reports in 2014 that Forever 21 have ceased the use of angora.

/ According to PRNewswire in 2015, Forever 21 has installed a solar system at its headquarters in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles. It is now the largest single-rooftop solar power system in Los Angeles County and the third-largest in California.

/ Rainforest Action Network (RAN) released a report in 2015 documenting the results of decades of irresponsible fabric sourcing including, human rights abuse to forest-dependent communities caused by deforestation from tree-based fabric production companies. Forever 21 was one of the companies targeted in the report.

 

 

/ Forever 21 has no publicly available social or environmental goals. Do you know of any?

 

/ Forever 21 published several CSR projects in 2011. We have no further information about the status of those projects since then. These include projects include donations to FEED and the Humane Society among others.

/ In November 2015, WWD reported that Forever 21 had partnered with the charity Soles4Souls, a nonprofit that helps fight poverty by distributing clothing and shoes to the impoverished. Forever 21 donated one article of clothing for every outerwear purchase made during December 2015, with donations capping off at a value of $1.5 million.

 

 

 

/ We are not sure of how much the CEO was paid last year.

/ As of June 29, 2016, Forbes reported that the founders of Forever 21, Jin Sook and Don Won Chang have a combined estimated net worth of $3.9 billion.

/ As of June 29, 2016, Forbes reported that Forever 21 has been sued more than 50 times in the last 30-some years, mainly for copy infringement.

/ In April 2015, Fortune reported that a transgender discrimination suit had been filed against Forever 21, after a manager allegedly made harassing remarks against a transgender employee in 2015.

/ In February 2016, People reported that Forever 21 had received criticism after the brand launched an Instagram for the brand’s plus-size clothing line. Followers complained that models did not look as though they fell into the plus-size sizing range. People reported that Forever 21 removed some of the controversial images and were “working to ensure all of our future posts accurately represent the Forever 21 Plus customer.”

/ In March 2016, New York Daily News reported that Forever 21 had removed a controversial t-shirt from its shelves after complaints that it promoted rape.

 

/ According to PRNewswire in 2015, Forever 21 has installed a solar system at its headquarters in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles. It is now the largest single-rooftop solar power system in Los Angeles County and the third-largest in California.

VOICES

Forbes logoGREG PETRO | FORBES

“Millennial women that skew toward the younger end of the demographic are very price sensitive, but they also want to have the latest looks. This is a major driving force behind fast fashion, and Forever 21 is one of the main players in that space due to its ability to attract price-conscious shoppers who want to look good without spending a fortune. They’re OK with the fact that the clothes are essentially disposable, because they can still afford to come back for more.” – 04/12/2016


AMY MERRICK | NEW YORKER

“Writing about Forever 21, a contributor to a college-fashion Web site last year skimmed over labor concerns in a single paragraph, then spent the rest of her post explaining how to choose the best-made items in the store. She recommended holding clothes up to the light to determine whether they’re see-through, and pulling gently on their seams to see if they unravel. It’s a vivid illustration of one reason Forever 21 shoppers keep coming back: with clothes so cheap and flimsy, they need to return often to replenish their closets.” –  6/6/2014


CHAVIE LIEBER | RACKED

“the brand’s reputation is far from spotless. According to a report by Privco, Forever 21 has been sued more than 50 times by designers like Diane von Furstenberg and Anna Sui for allegedly knocking off designs. Forever has also faced countless labor lawsuits that cite poor factory conditions, and was even subpoenaed by the U.S. Department of Labor in 2012 to hand over supply chain information.”

“While shoppers might be interested in sustainable fashion in theory, Forever 21’s strong revenue numbers imply many are not ready to give up competitive pricing just yet, regardless of the repercussions that come with it.” – 3/19/2015


SHANNON WHITEHEAD | HUFFINGTON POST

Fast fashion giants, such as H&M, Zara and Forever21, are concerned with the bottom line and the bottom line alone. Their business models are dependent on the consumers’ desire for new clothing to wear — which is instinctive if the clothing falls apart in one wash.” – 10/19/2014

“‘With F21 Red, we are able to deliver greater quantities of the styles and trends customers seek, while maintaining the value and entry-level category price points Forever 21 is known for offering,’ general merchandising manager Linda Chang.”- Linda Chang, Racked 5/8/2014