Return of formal parties suits delighted Moss Bros


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The Independent Online

The black-tie Christmas function is back, a delighted Moss Bros declared yesterday.

"We have seen much more demand both on the hire side and the retail side," said Brian Brick, the boss of the suitmaker. "The evidence is that there are more black-tie parties and events this Christmas than there have been for the last couple of years."

Moss Bros also said that all the weddings which were put on hold during the summer of sport had, as it had hoped, taken place during what Mr Brick called a "hectic September".

That meant same-store sales in the past 19 weeks rose by 3.7 per cent while gross margins have improved as last year's steep rises in raw materials prices worked their way out of the system.

The launch of the French Connection dinner jacket range for hire, costing £75 a night against the usual £50, has gone well.

Early next year the hire range will launch a Ted Baker morning suit followed by a black-tie combo later in the year.

The new year will also see the launch of a new retail website with a revamped hire site going live later in the first half.

"We enter the important Christmas trading period in good shape," said Mr Brick.

"We are confident about the outcome for the full year."