Supergroup targets West End for flagship store

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The Independent Online

Supergroup, the owner of the trendy Superdry fashion brand, has ratcheted up its efforts to find a flagship store in London's West End, as it seeks to reinforce its credentials as a global player in the retail market.

The fast-growing group, which floated in March 2010, has recently enquired about two large sites on the capital's Oxford Street and Regent Street, but deals have not materialised.

Supergroup refers to its store in the Westfield shopping centre, west London, as its flagship but, like most big fashion players, it ideally wants a big shop in the WestEnd to showcase its brand to suppliers overseas and visitors to the capital.

A Supergroup spokeswoman said: "We are always on the lookout for good sites and have made no secret of the fact we would like to add another flagship site in central London to our expanding portfolio. SuperGroup is now of a size and scale which warrants it and it would complement our existing flagship store at Westfield."

Supergroup, which also owns the Cult clothing brand, posted a 86.9 per cent jump in total sales to £81.7m for its third quarter to 30 January, driven by strong underlying revenues and new store openings. This represented an acceleration on the 74.7 per cent per cent growth over the nine-month period.

Supergroup has 59 standalone Cult and Superdry retail stores, 69 concessions and a growing wholesale operation. Its products are sold in 36 countries overseas via a network of distributors, licensees, agents and franchisees.

Concerns have been raised that its popular Superdry brand – best known for its Japanese writing – could suffer from oversaturation.

However, earlier this month, Supergroup's founder, Julian Dunkerton, said: "The hardest thing is to create a brand. If you were reliant on one logo or product, I would be sweating but we are not. The product is selling across the categories. We have truly become a strong brand." Shares in Supergroup, which floated at 500p last year, rose by 44p on Friday to close at £16.30p.