For the longest time classic fashion retailers were reluctant to engage with all-powerful competitors such as Zalando or About You. At the latest since the corona pandemic cooperation with such online platforms has, however, become interesting. Thousands of boutiques are now selling their garments via Zalando and similar companies. With comparatively little effort they were able to keep pace with the competition when bricks and mortar stores were forced to close. And it is very unlikely that such businesses will withdraw from this new-found digital territory when the pandemic ends.

The fashion industry is not alone as regards this process. “Medium-size companies have initiated a transformation,” says Dr. Monika V. Kronbügel (PhD.), CEO of Global DiVision. Many of them have long since digitized individual processes. But many others, particularly family-operated businesses, were apprehensive about implementing a genuine digital transformation of their business models. A representative survey commissioned by the DZ Bank now reveals that many interviewees are ready to alter their corporate DNA via digitization and to invest in the future.

Some 20 percent of the businesses surveyed want to restructure their manufacturing processes and business models in the long term. This applies across all industries and company sizes. According to the study, just under 40 percent of medium-size companies are increasing their investment in digitization, new technologies, and artificial intelligence. In the case of companies with a turnover exceeding 50 million euros over half have such plans.

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