Presentations made painless

Company > ASOS: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

ASOS: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Published: Feb 27, 2023

Inside This Article


    In this blog article, we will delve into the business model of ASOS, a leading online fashion retailer. With its innovative approach to e-commerce, ASOS has revolutionized the way people shop for clothing. We will explore the key elements of their business model, including their extensive product range, focus on sustainability, and strong customer engagement strategies. Additionally, a comprehensive SWOT analysis will be conducted to assess ASOS's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in the ever-evolving fashion industry. Lastly, we will identify ASOS's major competitors and analyze their strategies to understand the competitive landscape in 2023.

    What You Will Learn:

    • Who owns ASOS and the key stakeholders involved in the company's ownership.
    • The mission statement of ASOS and how it guides the company's operations and goals.
    • How ASOS generates revenue and the various ways it makes money, including its business model canvas.
    • The main competitors of ASOS in the fashion e-commerce industry.
    • A SWOT analysis of ASOS, highlighting its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

    Who owns ASOS?

    Overview of ASOS ownership

    ASOS, the popular online fashion retailer, has a diverse ownership structure. The company's shares are publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange, meaning that ownership is distributed among a wide range of individual and institutional investors. This article will explore the major shareholders of ASOS and shed light on the company's ownership landscape.

    Founders and early investors

    ASOS was founded in 2000 by Nick Robertson and Quentin Griffiths, who served as CEO and CFO respectively. They played a crucial role in establishing the company as a leading online fashion retailer and building its brand presence. However, as of now, neither Robertson nor Griffiths hold significant ownership stakes in ASOS.

    During its early stages, ASOS attracted investments from several venture capital firms, which helped fuel its growth. These firms, including Venrex Investment Management and Acton Capital Partners, played a vital role in providing the necessary capital and expertise to scale up the business. While their ownership stakes have diminished over time, they were instrumental in ASOS's initial success.

    Institutional investors

    As ASOS expanded its operations and gained traction in the retail industry, it attracted interest from institutional investors. These investors, such as BlackRock, Schroders, and Legal & General, have taken substantial positions in ASOS, reflecting their confidence in the company's future prospects.

    BlackRock, one of the largest asset management companies globally, holds a notable stake in ASOS. Its investment signifies the company's potential and aligns with BlackRock's strategy of investing in companies with strong growth prospects. Similarly, Schroders and Legal & General have also invested in ASOS, emphasizing their belief in the company's long-term value.

    Retail investors

    ASOS's listing on the London Stock Exchange allows retail investors to own shares in the company. This broadens the ownership base and provides individual investors with an opportunity to invest in a prominent online fashion retailer. Retail investors can purchase ASOS shares through online trading platforms or traditional brokerage firms, enabling them to participate in the company's growth and potential returns.


    ASOS's ownership structure is a blend of founders, early investors, institutional investors, and retail investors. While the founders and early investors have reduced their ownership stakes, institutional investors and retail investors continue to hold significant positions in the company. This diverse ownership landscape reflects the confidence and interest in ASOS's prospects, positioning it as a leading player in the online fashion industry.

    What is the mission statement of ASOS?

    ASOS's Mission Statement

    ASOS, an online fashion retailer, has a clear and concise mission statement that guides its operations and decision-making processes. The mission statement of ASOS is: "To become the number one fashion destination for 20-somethings globally."

    This mission statement highlights ASOS's ambition to cater to the fashion needs of individuals in their twenties, irrespective of their location around the world. By positioning themselves as the go-to fashion destination, ASOS aims to provide a seamless and enjoyable shopping experience for their target demographic.

    ASOS's mission statement reflects their commitment to continually adapt and innovate to meet the evolving demands and preferences of their young customers. By focusing on this specific age group, ASOS aims to understand and anticipate the fashion trends and styles that resonate with 20-somethings.

    Furthermore, the global aspect of ASOS's mission statement emphasizes their intention to expand their reach beyond borders. ASOS strives to create a fashion community that transcends geographical boundaries, offering a diverse range of products that appeal to customers from various cultural backgrounds.

    ASOS's mission statement also implies their dedication to providing a wide selection of fashion items. This commitment is evident through the extensive range of clothing, accessories, and beauty products available on their website. Their goal is to ensure that every customer finds something that suits their style and individuality.

    In summary, ASOS's mission statement encapsulates their aspiration to be the ultimate fashion destination for 20-somethings worldwide. By leveraging their understanding of this specific demographic's preferences, ASOS aims to deliver a personalized and inclusive shopping experience while continuously expanding their global presence.

    How does ASOS make money?

    E-commerce sales

    ASOS primarily generates its revenue through e-commerce sales. As an online fashion retailer, the company operates a vast digital platform that allows customers to browse and purchase a wide range of clothing, accessories, and beauty products. With an extensive inventory comprising of over 85,000 products from various brands, ASOS offers a convenient and seamless shopping experience to its customers worldwide.

    The company earns money by selling these products at retail prices. ASOS sources its inventory from both its in-house brands as well as external fashion labels, ensuring a diverse selection to cater to different customer preferences. By leveraging its strong relationships with suppliers and utilizing its scale, ASOS is able to negotiate favorable wholesale prices, maximizing its profit margins when selling to consumers.

    ASOS Marketplace

    In addition to its core e-commerce sales, ASOS also generates revenue through its marketplace platform known as ASOS Marketplace. The marketplace serves as a platform for independent brands and vintage boutiques to sell their products directly to ASOS customers.

    ASOS Marketplace provides a unique opportunity for smaller fashion businesses to reach a larger audience and gain exposure. It offers a curated selection of trendy and unique fashion items, attracting customers who are looking for something different from mainstream fashion. ASOS charges a commission on each sale made through the marketplace, allowing the company to generate additional revenue while supporting emerging fashion talent.

    ASOS Premier Delivery

    ASOS Premier Delivery is a subscription-based service offered by the company, providing customers with unlimited next-day or nominated-day delivery for a yearly fee. This premium service guarantees fast and convenient shipping for customers who frequently shop on ASOS.

    By offering ASOS Premier Delivery, the company not only generates additional revenue through subscription fees but also aims to enhance customer loyalty and encourage repeat purchases. This service appeals to customers who prioritize convenience and prompt delivery, further solidifying ASOS's position as a leading online fashion retailer.

    Sponsored Content and Advertising

    ASOS monetizes its strong online presence by partnering with brands and featuring sponsored content on its website and social media channels. Through collaborations with fashion and beauty brands, ASOS promotes sponsored content such as product placements, sponsored posts, and collaborations.

    By leveraging its vast audience reach and influence within the fashion industry, ASOS offers brands an opportunity to showcase their products to a highly engaged and fashion-conscious customer base. In return, ASOS receives monetary compensation from these brand partnerships, contributing to its overall revenue.


    ASOS's revenue model revolves around e-commerce sales, with a strong emphasis on providing a diverse range of fashion products to customers worldwide. The company also generates revenue through its marketplace platform, subscription-based services, and sponsored content. By continually adapting to the evolving needs of its customers and capitalizing on its online presence, ASOS has established itself as a successful player in the fashion e-commerce industry.

    ASOS Business Model Canvas Explained

    Introduction to ASOS

    ASOS, which stands for "As Seen On Screen," is a popular online fashion retailer that caters to young adults. Since its establishment in 2000, ASOS has grown exponentially and is now one of the leading players in the e-commerce industry. To understand how ASOS operates and achieves its success, it is helpful to analyze its business model using the Business Model Canvas framework.

    Customer Segments

    ASOS has a diverse range of customer segments that it targets with its fashion offerings. Primarily, it caters to fashion-forward individuals in the age group of 20 to 35, who are tech-savvy and prefer online shopping. ASOS also serves customers across different geographical locations, including the United Kingdom, Europe, the United States, and Australia. Additionally, the company has recently expanded its market reach by introducing ASOS Marketplace, a platform that allows independent fashion sellers to reach a wider audience.

    Value Proposition

    ASOS's value proposition revolves around providing a wide selection of trendy and affordable fashion products. The company aims to be a one-stop destination for all fashion needs, offering a broad range of clothing, accessories, beauty products, and more. ASOS differentiates itself by curating its product assortment to cater to various styles, sizes, and budgets. Moreover, the online platform provides an engaging and personalized shopping experience, with features such as style recommendations, outfit inspiration, and a user-friendly interface.


    ASOS primarily operates through its e-commerce platform, which serves as its main distribution channel. The website and mobile app allow customers to easily browse and purchase products, while also providing access to customer support and order tracking. ASOS utilizes social media platforms, digital marketing, and influencer collaborations to drive traffic to its online channels. Additionally, the company has established partnerships with select physical retailers to expand its brand presence and offer click-and-collect services.

    Customer Relationships

    ASOS places a strong emphasis on building and maintaining customer relationships. The company strives to provide exceptional customer service by offering various support channels, including live chat, email, and phone assistance. ASOS also encourages customer engagement through its interactive social media presence, where customers can share their experiences and provide feedback. The company frequently conducts surveys and gathers customer insights to enhance its offerings and improve the overall shopping experience.

    Revenue Streams

    ASOS generates revenue primarily through the sale of fashion products on its online platform. The company offers a wide range of price points, ensuring that customers with varying budgets can find products that suit their needs. In addition to product sales, ASOS also generates revenue from its ASOS Marketplace, where independent sellers pay a commission on their sales. Furthermore, ASOS collaborates with brands for exclusive collections and occasionally offers subscription-based services, such as ASOS Premier Delivery, which provides unlimited next-day delivery.

    Key Activities and Resources

    ASOS's key activities revolve around sourcing, merchandising, and marketing its fashion products. The company continuously scouts for emerging fashion trends, collaborates with designers and brands, and manages its own private label collections. ASOS invests in building a robust technology infrastructure to support its e-commerce operations, including website maintenance, inventory management, and logistics. Furthermore, the company allocates resources to marketing campaigns, influencer collaborations, and customer analytics to drive customer acquisition and retention.

    Key Partnerships

    ASOS maintains strategic partnerships with various stakeholders in the fashion industry. The company collaborates with fashion brands to offer exclusive collections and partnerships with influencers to increase brand visibility. ASOS also works closely with suppliers and manufacturers to ensure a consistent supply of products and maintain quality standards. Additionally, ASOS Marketplace fosters partnerships with independent sellers, allowing them to reach a wider customer base.

    Cost Structure

    ASOS incurs costs across multiple areas to sustain its operations. Some of the major cost components include inventory sourcing, warehousing, logistics, and distribution. The company invests in marketing and advertising campaigns to enhance brand awareness and drive customer acquisition. Furthermore, ASOS allocates resources to technology infrastructure, including website development and maintenance, as well as customer support services. Additionally, the company incurs overhead costs related to administration, legal, and regulatory compliance.

    Which companies are the competitors of ASOS?

    Fast Fashion Giants

    ASOS, being one of the leading online fashion retailers, faces fierce competition from other fast-fashion giants in the industry. These companies not only offer trendy and affordable clothing options but also have a strong online presence, making them direct competitors to ASOS. Some of the main fast fashion competitors of ASOS include:

    1. Zara

    Zara, a Spanish fashion retailer, is renowned for its ability to quickly translate runway trends into affordable garments. With a vast network of physical stores and a well-established online platform, Zara competes directly with ASOS in terms of offering the latest fashion styles at reasonable prices.

    2. H&M

    H&M, another prominent player in the fast-fashion industry, operates globally with a substantial online presence. Known for its collaborations with renowned designers and celebrities, H&M offers a wide range of trendy clothing options for men, women, and children. With its competitive pricing strategy, H&M poses a significant threat to ASOS.

    3. Forever 21

    Focused on targeting young consumers, Forever 21 offers trendy and affordable fashion for both men and women. With a strong online presence and physical stores in various locations, Forever 21 competes directly with ASOS in terms of targeting the same demographic and providing affordable fashion choices.

    Online Fashion Retailers

    Aside from fast-fashion giants, ASOS also faces competition from other online fashion retailers. These companies have built a strong online presence and cater to a similar demographic, offering customers a wide range of clothing options. Some notable online fashion retailers that compete with ASOS include:

    1. Boohoo

    Boohoo is a UK-based online fashion retailer that targets young consumers with its trendy and affordable clothing options. With a focus on fast-fashion and rapid product turnover, Boohoo competes directly with ASOS in terms of offering a wide range of fashion choices at competitive prices.

    2. Missguided

    Missguided, another UK-based online fashion retailer, also targets young consumers seeking affordable and on-trend clothing options. With a strong social media presence and collaborations with influencers, Missguided competes with ASOS in terms of targeting the same demographic and offering affordable fashion choices.

    3. PrettyLittleThing

    PrettyLittleThing, a UK-based online fashion retailer, focuses on offering affordable and fashionable clothing for young women. With a strong emphasis on social media marketing and collaborations with celebrities, PrettyLittleThing competes directly with ASOS in terms of targeting the same demographic and offering trendy fashion options.

    These fast-fashion giants and online fashion retailers present ASOS with fierce competition in terms of providing affordable, stylish, and convenient fashion choices to customers. As the online fashion industry continues to grow, it is essential for ASOS to stay innovative and maintain its competitive edge in order to thrive in this highly competitive market.

    ASOS SWOT Analysis


    ASOS has several key strengths that have contributed to its success in the online fashion retail industry:

    1. Strong brand recognition: ASOS has established itself as a reputable and recognizable brand among fashion-conscious shoppers globally. This has helped build customer trust and loyalty, allowing the company to attract a large customer base.

    2. Wide product range: With over 85,000 products from various brands, ASOS offers a diverse selection of clothing, accessories, and beauty products. This extensive product range caters to different consumer preferences and allows customers to find unique and trendy items.

    3. Effective marketing strategies: ASOS utilizes innovative and engaging marketing strategies to connect with its target audience. Through social media platforms, influencer collaborations, and fashion partnerships, ASOS effectively promotes its brand and products, driving customer engagement and sales.

    4. Efficient supply chain management: ASOS has developed a robust supply chain management system, allowing for fast and accurate order fulfillment. This enables the company to provide customers with timely delivery options, enhancing the overall shopping experience.


    While ASOS has achieved significant success in the online fashion retail industry, it also faces certain weaknesses:

    1. Product quality concerns: Some customers have expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of certain ASOS products. This can lead to negative reviews and potential loss of customer trust. ASOS needs to address these concerns to maintain its reputation and retain customers.

    2. High return rates: ASOS offers free returns, which encourages customers to try multiple sizes or styles. While this policy enhances customer satisfaction, it also results in high return rates, impacting the company's profitability and operational efficiency.

    3. Reliance on third-party brands: ASOS heavily relies on third-party brands for its product offerings. This dependency makes the company vulnerable to changes in brand availability, pricing, and supply chain disruptions. ASOS should consider diversifying its product mix to reduce this risk.


    ASOS can capitalize on various opportunities to further strengthen its position in the online fashion retail industry:

    1. International expansion: ASOS has experienced significant growth in international markets, and there is further potential for expansion. By entering new markets and tailoring its offerings to local preferences, ASOS can tap into a larger customer base and increase its global market share.

    2. Growth in the male fashion market: ASOS has already made strides in the male fashion market, and there is ample opportunity for further growth. By expanding its product range and marketing efforts targeting male customers, ASOS can capture a larger share of this growing market segment.

    3. Sustainable fashion: With increasing consumer awareness and demand for sustainable fashion, ASOS can differentiate itself by offering eco-friendly and ethically sourced products. By incorporating sustainability initiatives into its business practices, ASOS can attract environmentally conscious customers and strengthen its brand image.


    ASOS faces several threats that could impact its growth and success:

    1. Intense competition: The online fashion retail industry is highly competitive, with numerous established players and new entrants constantly emerging. ASOS faces competition from both online and offline retailers, requiring continuous innovation and differentiation to stay ahead.

    2. Economic fluctuations: ASOS's performance is influenced by macroeconomic factors such as consumer spending power and economic stability. During economic downturns, discretionary spending on fashion items may decline, impacting ASOS's sales and profitability.

    3. Changing fashion trends: The fashion industry is highly dynamic, with trends changing rapidly. ASOS needs to stay updated with the latest fashion trends and adapt its product offerings accordingly to meet customer demand. Failure to do so may result in inventory obsolescence and reduced customer interest.

    4. Logistics and supply chain disruptions: ASOS relies on efficient logistics and supply chain operations to deliver products to customers. Any disruptions, such as natural disasters, transportation issues, or labor disputes, can impact the company's ability to fulfill orders on time, resulting in customer dissatisfaction and potential revenue loss.

    Key Takeaways

    • Ownership of ASOS: ASOS is a publicly traded company, meaning it is owned by shareholders who own its stock.
    • Mission statement: ASOS's mission is to become the world's number one fashion destination for 20-somethings, offering a wide range of fashion products and a seamless online shopping experience.
    • Revenue generation: ASOS makes money primarily through the sale of fashion products on its online platform. It also generates revenue through partnerships, collaborations, and advertising.
    • Business Model Canvas: The Business Model Canvas of ASOS includes key elements such as customer segments, value proposition, channels, customer relationships, revenue streams, key resources, key activities, and partnerships.
    • Competitors: ASOS faces competition from various companies, including online fashion retailers such as Boohoo, Zara, H&M, and Amazon, as well as brick-and-mortar stores that have expanded their online presence.
    • SWOT Analysis: ASOS's strengths include its strong brand recognition and wide product range, while its weaknesses include dependence on suppliers and potential inventory management challenges. Opportunities for ASOS include international expansion and the growing demand for online shopping, while threats include intense competition and changes in fashion trends.


    In conclusion, ASOS is owned by its founder, Nick Robertson, and has established itself as a leading online fashion retailer. The company's mission statement is to "inspire and empower young adults to express their best selves through our wide range of fashion products." ASOS generates revenue through the sale of clothing, accessories, and beauty products on its platform, as well as through advertising and collaborations with brands. Its business model canvas provides a comprehensive overview of key activities, resources, and partnerships that drive its success. Competitors of ASOS include well-known fashion retailers such as Zara, H&M, and Boohoo. Conducting a SWOT analysis reveals that while ASOS has strengths such as a strong online presence and a wide product range, it also faces challenges such as intense competition and potential supply chain disruptions. Overall, ASOS continues to adapt and innovate in the dynamic fashion industry, solidifying its position as a leader in online retail.


    What is ASOS weakness?

    One weakness of ASOS is its heavy reliance on online sales. As an e-commerce fashion retailer, ASOS is highly vulnerable to any disruptions in its online operations, such as website crashes or technical issues. This can negatively impact customer experience and result in lost sales. Additionally, ASOS faces intense competition in the online fashion industry, making it crucial for the company to continually invest in marketing and customer acquisition to stay ahead. This can put pressure on profitability and sustainability in the long term. Furthermore, ASOS's global presence exposes it to risks related to currency fluctuations, trade policies, and regional economic downturns. Such external factors can impact the company's financial performance and growth prospects.

    What is a SWOT analysis of a clothing brand?

    A SWOT analysis of a clothing brand examines its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Here is an example of a SWOT analysis for a clothing brand:


    1. Strong brand identity and recognition.
    2. High-quality and well-designed products.
    3. Established distribution channels and partnerships.
    4. Effective marketing and advertising strategies.
    5. Efficient supply chain management.


    1. Limited product range or lack of diversity.
    2. Reliance on a specific target market or customer segment.
    3. Limited presence in international markets.
    4. Higher production costs compared to competitors.
    5. Inconsistent customer service.


    1. Expansion into new markets or geographical regions.
    2. Introduction of new product lines or collaborations.
    3. Growing demand for sustainable and eco-friendly clothing options.
    4. Online sales growth and e-commerce advancements.
    5. Leveraging social media and influencers for brand promotion.


    1. Intense competition from established and emerging clothing brands.
    2. Economic downturns and fluctuations affecting consumer spending.
    3. Counterfeit products and intellectual property infringement.
    4. Shifting consumer preferences and fashion trends.
    5. Potential supply chain disruptions or raw material price fluctuations.

    It is important to note that the SWOT analysis should be tailored to the specific clothing brand and its market conditions. Additionally, the analysis should be regularly reviewed and updated as the brand and industry evolve.

    What is ASOS competitive advantage?

    ASOS' competitive advantage lies in several key areas:

    1. Wide product range: ASOS offers a vast selection of clothing, accessories, footwear, and beauty products from over 850 top brands, as well as its own label. This extensive product range caters to a diverse customer base, ensuring there is something for everyone.

    2. Trend-focused and fast fashion: ASOS quickly identifies and adapts to emerging fashion trends, offering customers the latest styles. Its agile supply chain allows for quick turnaround times, ensuring new products are available to customers faster than many traditional retailers.

    3. Online-only presence: ASOS operates solely as an online retailer, eliminating the costs and limitations associated with physical stores. This enables them to offer competitive prices and a seamless shopping experience that can be accessed from anywhere in the world.

    4. Strong digital platform: ASOS has built a robust and user-friendly website and mobile app, providing customers with an intuitive interface, personalized recommendations, and an engaging shopping experience. They leverage technology to enhance customer engagement and make online shopping convenient and enjoyable.

    5. Customer-centric approach: ASOS places a strong emphasis on customer satisfaction, offering free shipping and returns, multiple payment options, and excellent customer service. They also actively engage with their customer base through social media channels, creating a sense of community and building brand loyalty.

    Overall, ASOS' competitive advantage stems from its extensive product range, trend-focused approach, online-only presence, strong digital platform, and customer-centric strategy.

    What are ASOS key success factors?

    ASOS, an online fashion and beauty retailer, has several key success factors that have contributed to its growth and success. These factors include:

    1. Strong online presence: ASOS operates primarily as an online retailer, making it easily accessible to a global customer base. Its user-friendly website and mobile app provide a seamless shopping experience for customers.

    2. Wide product range: ASOS offers a diverse range of products, including clothing, accessories, beauty products, and footwear. This extensive product range caters to different customer preferences and allows ASOS to target a wider market.

    3. Trend-focused approach: ASOS constantly stays updated with the latest fashion trends and offers a wide selection of trendy and fashionable products. This enables the company to attract fashion-forward customers who seek the latest styles.

    4. Fast and reliable delivery: ASOS has established efficient delivery systems and offers various shipping options, including express delivery and free shipping. This ensures quick and reliable delivery of products, enhancing customer satisfaction.

    5. Strong customer engagement: ASOS engages with its customers through various channels, including social media platforms, mobile apps, and newsletters. The company actively interacts with its customers, seeking feedback and providing personalized recommendations, which helps in building customer loyalty.

    6. Affordable pricing: ASOS offers products at various price points, catering to customers with different budgets. Its competitive pricing strategy ensures affordability and attracts a wide range of customers.

    7. Sustainable and ethical practices: ASOS incorporates sustainability and ethical practices into its operations. It promotes responsible sourcing, supports fair trade, and offers eco-friendly products. This appeals to customers who prioritize sustainability and ethical consumption.

    8. Data-driven approach: ASOS utilizes data analytics and customer insights to personalize the shopping experience. It tracks customer preferences, purchasing patterns, and browsing behavior to provide personalized recommendations and offers, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

    9. Influencer collaborations: ASOS collaborates with influencers, celebrities, and fashion designers to create exclusive collections and collaborations. These partnerships help generate buzz, attract new customers, and enhance the brand's reputation.

    10. International expansion: ASOS has successfully expanded its presence into multiple international markets, which has contributed to its growth. By tailoring its offerings to local preferences and investing in localized customer service, ASOS has been able to tap into new markets and reach a global customer base.

    Want to create a presentation now?

    • instantly

      Instantly Create A Deck

      Let PitchGrade do this for me

    • smile

      Hassle Free

      We will create your text and designs for you. Sit back and relax while we do the work.

    Explore More Content