CWF, the kidswear wholesale and retail specialist, has opened its first standalone UK retail store.
The 400 sq ft store operates under the new-concept Atelier de Courcelles fascia in Westfield London. The company already has a UK retail presence via concessions in 14 House of Fraser department stores. It has 3,500 stockists globally.
CWF UK managing director Kevin Thompson said: “The UK is one of the biggest markets for CWF and we needed a stronger retail presence. We will monitor its success to see if there is scope for further UK standalones but globally we have a target of 50 stores in the next three years.”
The chain has eight standalone stores globally, many of which were previously operated under CWF’s Younly fascia and are now being rebranded to Atelier de Courcelles, which has been designed by French interior designer Christophe Pillet.
Atelier de Courcelles stocks premium kidswear brands for 0- to 16-year-olds including Burberry, DKNY, Chloé, Elle, Escada, Marithé + François Girbaud and Timberland. It will also stock the new Boss kidswear collection from spring 10.
Thompson added: “Three years ago our UK business was entirely wholesale but that is not a healthy model for any company in the current climate. We now have a strong balance of wholesale and retail and intend to maintain that as we grow both organically.”
CWF intends to roll out both standalone and franchise Atelier de Courcelles stores in major European cities, as well as the Middle East and Asia.