Royal designer could boost Debenhams
Debenhams is counting on a Royal boost from the Duchess of Cambridge this summer, after the department store chain increased half-year profits and sales by a sliver.
It recently launched a range of occasion wear from Jenny Packham, the designer whose dress Kate Middleton wore on her first public outing with Prince William for a gala dinner at Kensington Palace in July.
Michael Sharp, the chief executive of Debenhams, expects the No 1 Jenny Packham line to be a popular seller around the Diamond Jubilee.
He said: "Things like that will be good winners this summer. There is the Kate Middleton factor. She [Ms Packham] is one of the designers that Kate Middleton regularly wears."
However, Mr Sharp said the overall impact of this summer's events – including the European Football Championship and the Olympics – on high street spending remained an "unknown".
In the half year to 3 March, Debenhams lifted its pre-tax profits 1.4 per cent to £127.1m. Its total sales rose by the same percentage to £1.24bn.
Woolwich terror attack: Suspect Michael Adebowale saw friend 'literally sliced to pieces' in 2008
Emergency landing at Heathrow sparks further controversy over London airport capacity
Unrest may spread across Europe, warns Red Cross chief
BNP and EDL accused of attempt to fuel racial hatred after Woolwich terror attack
You want to get an Eton scholarship? All you need to do is answer four (not so simple) questions
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.