Embryo Index: Movers & Shakers in February

Last month there were lots of changes to the Embryo Indexes, as well as updating Retail and Travel we also launched our new Fashion Index which focuses on retailers within affordable fashion, multi-brand retailers and more. 

Some brands are listed on both our Fashion and Retail indexes, and as both indexes use the same scoring metrics, the individual scores for the brands will be the same, however, due to the other brands being included in each, the ranking positions may differ. 

With the Fashion Index just launching there are no movements to report on, but who’s been making positive moves and who needs to work more on their strategies within Retail and Travel?


  • The biggest change to the retail index is the removal of Topshop, Topman and Miss Selfridge after they’ve been purchased and brought in house by ASOS. 

The £295 million deal will be part of ASOS multi-brand strategy as they increase their global distribution. As they continue their mission to be the “number one destination for fashion-loving 20-somethings throughout the world”, it will be interesting to see if they can continue to maintain their high scores. 

  • The removal of Topshop from the top 10, means other brands have moved up the rankings, including Net-a-Porter who were previously pushed out by Sports Direct’s December activities. Sports Direct also continue to make improvements to their index score, gaining 2.1 points. This is down to their links score increasing 14%. 
  • Marks and Spencer continue to stay in the top 10 but fall further down the rankings as their content score decreases by 21.5%.
  • Since boohoo purchased Debenhams we’ve also seen a 13% increase in their content score which has pushed their overall score up 1.4 points. The £55 million deal for the name and website, shows how Covid and the demand for online fashion have further taken away sales from the high street.


Not surprisingly, there are more companies in the travel industry losing points than gaining them. 

  • Gatwick Airport has seen the biggest drop, losing 6.5 points off its overall index score. This is down to their keyword reach and content scores falling 10% and 39.6% respectively. The airport has remained open during covid restrictions, however, their passenger numbers fell 78% and their annual reports show a loss of £465.5million. Despite the challenges faced, Gatwick’s CEO remains optimistic that the airport will recover and if restrictions lift like they are expected to, it will be interesting to see how their scores change in the index.
  • Blue Chip Holidays have improved their overall index score by 3.6 points due to their content score increasing by 78.9%, most likely due to the company trying to keep up with demand, as more people are booking local holidays rather than travelling abroad. 

Closing statement

It’s not surprising to see that this month our retail index has seen more positive movers whilst our travel index has seen more negatives, as the travel brands continue to struggle with COVID-19 restrictions. However, as more consumers start booking holidays for when restrictions lift and look for deals, more positive changes are likely to occur. 

Meanwhile, we expect brands within retail and fashion to continue to fluctuate, as the demand for online shopping will continue even as non-essential shops begin to open.

Overall regardless of the industry, it will be the brands that use a multi-channel strategy that will stand out from the competition and benefit.

The Embryo Indexes are regularly updated and we share these updates on our social channels, so stay up to date by following us on LinkedIn. If you want to know more about the Index or have your business featured, then get in touch with Team Embryo.


Latest News & Blogs