With more product, a new team and extra stockists, business is booming for denim and casualwear label Chilli Pepper.
The past 18 months have been a busy time for Chilli Pepper and managing director Alan Strang. Following an undisclosed investment by management company Lesing Ten in May 2006, the young fashion brand has seen an explosion in business. New staff, an expanded account base and two new sub-brands have resulted in a 100% increase in turnover for the last financial year with a predicted £15 million for next year.
The changes have been underpinned by the appointment of key new members of staff in the past 18 months. These include merchandising director Horacio Broggi from Spanish brand Desigual, and Dutchman Stefan Zwiebel – previously at Lacoste in Australia – who is European business development manager. Zwiebel has taken over a large chunk of the international work from ex-commercial director Rob Pascoe.
“Stefan’s focus is on growing our international accounts and making sure we are focusing our energies in the right place,” says Strang.
Those energies have been free-flowing for the past 18 months, and international accounts have quadrupled to 1,500 during that period, with a projected 300 to be added in 2008. These include a planned inaugural franchise store in Bordeaux, and a flagship Italian shop in Milan or Florence. “We want to have a good presence in all capital cities and a strong flagship and franchise structure,” says Strang.