Buyer - Ladies’ swimwear, sportswear and nightwear, N Brown.
Just over five years into her career and already a buyer across key categories at JD Williams, Rachael Antal is testament to the fact that you don’t have to jump companies to climb the career ladder.
She got to know the business during a year-long placement as a buying assistant on nightwear during her third year at Manchester Metropolitan University, while studying for a BA in International Fashion Marketing. Emphasising the importance of placement years, she returned once she graduated in June 2009 with first-class honours.
She started as buying assistant on lingerie and swimwear in September 2009, before being made senior buying assistant two years later. Just five months later she became a trainee buyer position on swimwear in February 2012, and then junior buyer for swimwear and sportswear in September 2013. She was appointed to her current role in August.
Her quick trajectory is backed up by impressive figures. Profit increased 39% on her first season buying swimwear, and women’s sportswear is up 42% year on year. Her best season came in spring 14 when bikini sales rose 240% against spring 13.
She didn’t let a fear of presenting hold her back, and advises preparation to overcome nerves, crediting N Brown buying manager Francesca Adams as her mentor. Adams is just as complimentary and describes Antal as “dynamic” and “a star of the future”.