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Editor's Comment: How can retailers 'keep up with the Bakers'?

Ted Baker is proving to be one of the success stories of 2017. Posting another set of good results this week, the brand has announced a 14% jump in half-year revenues.

Its success comes from a mix of channels – in fact, that in itself is one of its strengths. Ted Baker has managed to find a balance between retail and wholesale, and has clear strategies on how to drive sales across both.

It also has a strong product offering and a brand DNA that pervades the entire business. Ted Baker has used its British heritage to appeal to international markets and drive the brand on the global stage. This most recent set of results show sales in Europe, North America and Asia are all up.

So how is Ted Baker staying ahead of the competition? For me, a big factor is that founder Ray Kelvin respects the core fundamentals of retail, while also embracing innovation.

Ted Baker has been a pioneer in experiential retail, opening its first standalone barbershop Ted’s Grooming Room in 2010. It has also trialled and tested new technologies both in store and online. As part of its “Keeping up with the Bakers” marketing campaign, the brand used augmented reality and interactive windows to enable customers to see themselves as part of the window display of the Regent Street store. It was one of the first fashion retailers to experiment with virtual reality, as well as hosting 360-degree shoppable films on its website.

The retailer doesn’t limit the focus on innovation to campaigns, however. Business operations are of equal importance – as seen in the consolidation of logistics facilities in the first half of this year to streamline the back end.

We recently featured an interview with Kelvin, “the man behind Ted”, and Sir Ian Cheshire for Drapers’ 130th anniversary book. It quickly became clear that the two men share a passion for product and a focus on the customer. This week, Kelvin has shown that Ted Baker’s focus on “design, quality and attention to detail” is a recipe for ongoing success. It’s this, alongside an effective multichannel business strategy that really keeps Ted Baker ahead of the game.

To buy a copy of Drapers’ 130th book, go to


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