?The kidswear market was once the specialists' territory and for a long time they kept the supermarket giants at bay. Not any more, says Laura Weir at Drapers The time when doting parents would shop separately for their children's clothing at kidswear specialists and buy the weekly toilet roll and frozen oven chips from the local supermarket is over. As long as quality was the priority, the specialists managed to fend off the volume players. But today the supermarkets are top of the class for kidswear, having weighed in heavily in the 1990s. Tesco now holds 10.4% of the market, up 10% from last year in volume terms, according to TNS. And other key players such as Asda and Sainsbury's also offer good quality, fashionable clothing at reasonable prices. They command volume and value, tying up the sector at the expense of niche players. Asda has fired its most bullish salvo to date in the kidswear war by selling a complete school uniform for less than £10 - 34% down on last year's price of £14.95. The retailer targeted the innovative pack, which includes a polo shirt, vest, sweatshirt, underpants, a pair of socks, trousers or a skirt and a pair of black scuff-resistant shoes, at three to six-year-olds. Tesco has a three-for-two promotion on back-to- school ranges and Sainsbury's has cut its prices by about 8% compared with this time last year. The price wars are making life increasingly difficult for everyone else in the schoolwear field. In some cases the effects on independent retailers has been devastating. Earlier this year Bratz, a well-respected kidswear independent, went into administration following tough trading and it's not the only one. There have been various casualties on local high streets as retailers have buckled under the relentless pressure from the supermarkets. In a category where easy-to-design basics, in pinks and sparkles for girls and stripes and blues for boys, are consistent trends, independents can't compete. These styles, coupled with the buying power of the big three, make easy wins for the supermarkets. No doubt Asda's rivals will be sharpening their game plans ready to take on the £10 offer this September, which means the battle will continue and there is little hope for anyone else in the face of such dogged competitors.