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Clothing Retail Industry Guide

The ultimate guide to researching men's, women's, and children's clothing and accessories retail

Companies & Competitors

Use the resources below to gather a better understanding about the companies in the clothing retail industry.

Start by looking for information about the larger or publicly-held companies first, since it is a lot more challenging to find private company information. 

My favorite ways to use Mergent Online:

  1. Search by by company name (public companies work best).  From the company page, click on the Competitors Tab to create a custom report for competitors in an industry.
  2. Click the Supply Chain Tab to find supplier and buyer partnerships for the company. 
  3. Be sure to click on the "Company Reports" tab and then select "Brokerage  Research Reports."   This will find stock and equity reports from analysts.  These reports are wonderful resources for analyzing a company or an industry. 


Screenshot of Mergent Online showing the three locations of the tabs described above

  • I recommend searching for larger public companies in the industry to get started, as you will find the most information for public companies.
  • You can also find some information for larger private companies in some cases. 
  • Use the advanced search feature to filter companies by industry (Consumer Products –> Apparel), and by additional criteria if you wish (location, growth rate, size, number of employees, minority ownership, and more).
  • Use the Advanced Search to search by Industry code to identify companies
  • From the Advanced Search Page:
    1. Click on Industry
    2. In the SIC Tree, browse to (5) Wholesale & Retail Trade"
    3. Select the Drop-Down Menu for (56) Apparel and Accessory Stores
    4. Continue filtering until you find the industry sector you are looking for.  
    5. Check the boxes to add industries to your search, and then select "Add to Criteria" at the bottom of the page.
    6. Click search, or go back to the top of the page to limit by location, size, or other criteria. 
  • Note that sometimes you can go too granular and not get enough results.  If this is the case, go up one level in the SIC tree to select a broader industry sector.