- Angela Gonzalez-Rodriguez |
The first set of full-year results since Cath Kidston stepped down as creative director of her namesake company has been greatly helped by the success of the brand beyond the British borders.
As reported by ‘The Times’, Cath Kidston continues to enjoy a boom in popularity and therefore sales in Japan, being this country the leading growth engine for the group’s international sales grow last year.
Data gathered within the accounts submitted to the Companies House show international retail sales improved by 20.2 percent to 55.3 million pounds, boosting group sales to add 2.4 percent to 118.5 million pounds.
Over the past twelve months, Cath Kidston invested in a new distribution centre in Asia and expanded into the Middle East. Another corporate milestones for the group was the acquisition of 27 of its Japanese stores from its franchise partner.
First year after founder stepped back: big push in Asia and solid sales
After opening 45 stores this year, Cath Kidston now has 205 stores, 135 of which are overseas and 123 of which sit in Asia. It said Japan is now its biggest market, after the UK. Chief executive Kenny Wilson, who took over in 2011, said: “I am very excited about the coming year and our plans to grow the business even further.”
Despite the huge increase in international sales, the retailer struggled in the UK – falling 3 percent during the period. Profits fell 36 percent to 16 million pounds, down from 25 million pounds a year earlier, after it invested in a new distribution centre in Asia and bought 27 of its Japanese stores from its franchise partner.
The rapid rate of expansion means it now has 205 stores overall, with the majority (135) overseas. It said the UK market, where sales fell 3 percent, was "challenging".
These investments cut the company´s underlying profits by 36 percent to 16 million pounds, well behind the 25 million pounds it recorded for the same period the previous year.
In this regard, chief executive Kenny Wilson, who directs the company since 2011, said it had been a year of "profound change" for the company with "unprecedented investment"."I am very excited about the coming year and our plans to grow the business even further," Wilson further added.
Kidston´s eponymous company started in London in 1993 and is now jointly controlled by private equity firm TA Associates and Hong Kong-based Baring Private Equity Asia.