Base Childrenswear is working with UK menswear brands to produce exclusive kidswear ranges, including shirt designer Mark Westwood and denim label Voi Jeans.
The retailer has also introduced an outerwear range with heritage-inspired label Bellfield, which it plans to expand to a full collection next year, and a range with east London menswear brand Gifted Heroes. It is now looking for other partnerships with UK menswear brands to carve out a niche in kidswear retail.
Base Childrenswear currently trades from six stores in the southeast at Westfield London, Westfield Stratford, Romford, Basildon, Bluewater and Crawley, and online, offering fashion for boys aged from newborn to 16. It stocks a limited selection of girls’ fashion online and in all but the Westfield stores. The core target market is boys aged between eight and 16.
The business previously had a sister company called Base Retail, which traded as Base Menswear. It entered administration in February, closing four of its stores and making 10 people redundant.
The childrenswear business is registered as a separate entity on Companies House and was unaffected by the demise of the menswear firm, which was put down to tough market conditions and excessive business rates.
“We have sold childrenswear for the last 25 years, but it was previously a smaller part of the business. Now it is our main focus,” managing director Marc Granditer told Drapers.
“We have used our background in menswear in order to develop these exclusive lines as a point of difference for us. We think this is a fresh approach to kidswear retail.”
Granditer also revealed Base Childrenswear is looking to grow its online presence, which currently accounts for 15% of the total business. He appointed two people to look after social media in September and also plans to explore selling overseas.