With the company in recovery from their January slump in sales, Drapers casts an eye over happier times for the department store…
1778 – Business is founded as a small drapers firm called Flink & Clark
1813- William Debenhams invests in the firm, changing the name to ‘Clark and Debenhams’. The store specialises in expensive fabrics as well as bonnets, gloves and parasols.
1818 – Second store opens in Cheltenham
1905- The company is rebranded into the modern Debenhams group under the name ‘Debenhams Limited’.
1920- Debenhams purchases Knightsbridge’s Harvey Nichols.
1928 – Debenhams lists on the London Stock Exchange
1976 – Debenhams acquires Browns of Chester – the only store to retain its original brand identity
1985- Debenhams is acquired by The Burton Group. The department store is later demerged and in 2003 bought by private consortium Baroness Retail
1993- Designers at Debenhams launches
2003 – Debenhams opens its largest British store at Birmingham’s Bull Ring shopping centre.
2009 - Debenhams acquires Principles, and later in the year Danish department store group Magasin Du Nord.
September 2011- After eight years as chief executive of the brand, Rob Templemen retires handing the reins over to The Burton Group’s Michael Sharp.
July 2012- Debenhams launches its first foreign website in Germany.
March 2013 - Debenhams issues profit warning, saying it had been badly affected by poor weather.