MT460 – Ann Taylor: Survival in Specialty Retail Case Study Analysis

Company name: Ann Taylor

Topic of the week: Strategic Control Systems

Synopsis of the Situation

Since Ann Taylor was founded in 1994, it has continued to attract women who are in need of both classic and casual suits. Under the leadership of Kay Krill, Ann Taylor has outperformed its competitors in the retail industry. Krill became the Chief Executive Officer of Ann Taylor Stores Corporation in 2005. As a new leader of the company, Krill faced the challenges of meeting customer needs, maintaining the company’s brand image, and improving market share. By-mid 2008, Ann Taylor continued to operate in an environment full of uncertainties due to changes in the macroeconomic climate. During this time, Krill was committed to long-term growth, but she was undivided about the best strategy to implement in order to overcome the challenges (Pearce and Robinson, 2013).

Alternative solutions

The challenges faced by Ann Taylor can best be met through implementation of three different strategies. The three alternative solutions that the company can implement to build its brand image include creation of differentiated products to meet the needs of customers of different economic classes, focusing on fashionable products that are in line with market trend, and expanding its business to different nations globally in order to increase market share (Johar, Birk and Einwiller, 2010).

Selected solution to the problem

The best solution that Ann Taylor should implement is focusing on fashionable products that are in line with market trend. By implementing this strategy, Ann Taylor will meet the wardrobe needs of its classic customers, build a strong brand image, and increase its market share (Johar, Birk and Einwiller, 2010).


Ann Taylor should do a comprehensive market research to determine fashionable products that will meet the needs of its classic customers. In addition, Ann Taylor needs to identify new marketing strategies used to attract customers in the retail industry (Johar, Birk and Einwiller, 2010).

Recommendation and conclusion

It is recommended that Ann Taylor opens new stores with fashionable products in different countries of the world, and engage in rigorous advertising in order to increase the market share. By focusing on its balanced scorecard and control systems, Ann Taylor can guide and monitor implementation of the new strategy in order to move competitively forward (Kaplan and Norton, 1992).

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