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Superdry plays down delays as Asos tries to cancel order

SuperGroup chief executive Julian Dunkerton has said manufacturing delays to product from its Superdry young fashion brand are “minor”, as it emerged that etailer Asos is trying to cancel an order for goods worth £1m.

Last week, SuperGroup reported a 68.4% surge in group sales to £57.5m for the third quarter, but a number of independent stockists told Drapers they had yet to receive heavy outerwear from Superdry.

It has since emerged that a number of major stockists are also cancelling orders of Superdry product as a result of manufacturing hold-ups in China.

Asos is understood to be in negotiations to cancel its order for goods worth about £1m at retail, although it is believed to be facing resistance from Superdry, it is understood.

Sources told Drapers that “nearly every indie [stocking Superdry] in the Southeast of England has [also] been affected”.

However, Dunkerton said he was not aware that the Asos order was being cancelled and down-played the impact of the manufacturing delays.

“There have been minor cancellations,” he said. “In the grand scheme of things the delivery is a pain but it’s not material. If you look at our retail sales and our results, they’re increasing. If you look at our Westfield London [Superdry] store it’s a full shop.”

Dunkerton also said he would continue to work with the Chinese factory where the delays had occurred. “Every year a factory will let you down. In the scheme of things it’s nothing. We are not dumping the factory. It’s an outerwear factory that has let us down this quarter.” He would not reveal which Chinese factory was at fault.

One major Superdry stockist that has cancelled orders said the delays would hit Superdry’s standing as a brand. He said: “When [Berlin young fashion trade show] Bread & Butter comes, everyone will be looking for the new Superdry which they can rely on. We can take the blow, but for a small indie this will hurt.”

But one indie stockist affected said: “We haven’t cancelled [stock] as when it comes it sells so quickly.”

Readers' comments (2)

  • If I was ASOS, I'd tell Superdry to exactly what they can do with the order. They've let them down so ASOS is perfectly entitled to cancel. Besides, Supergroup are milking the brand for all it's worth and in three years time or so, we will be wondering what all the fuss was about.

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  • Delays are annoying, however, the whole industry has been hit by global changes by so called well meaning people which is causing these delays and putting chinese factories out of business. Superdry are not the only ones delivering late and they're lucky they still have a factory to produce these goods! and their product I believe is worth the wait! the most important thing is to communicate with retailers and keep them informed of what's happening so they can plan accordingly. The retailer-brand/supplier relationship is meant to be a partnership, brands need retailers and retailers need good brands! Sometimes they'll need to cancel but sometimes if they're informed in time they can re-stratagise. Remember when you cancel it's the factory workers that suffer! And, no I don't work for Superdry.

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