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Daily Round Up: Lipsy, BDO sales, Manchester Fashion Network, Clements and Church, Fallen Hero, unpaid interns

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From around the web and the nationals

Lipsy, the Next-owned young fashion brand and retailer, is to launch into the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and Lebanon after signing a multi-territory agreement with Middle Eastern franchise company Landmark Group. The group intends to open 17 Lipsy stores over the next five years.

Sales at fashion retailers dropped by 0.5% last week despite footwear sales experiencing a rise. According to the BDO High Street Sales Tracker sales at clothing stores dropped by 1.6% for the week ending November 13, however sales at footwear retailers rose by 6.8%.

Manchester Fashion Network will next week host the North’s first ever dedicated fashion e-commerce conference. The event, which will take place on November 30 at Castle Field Rooms, Manchester, will discuss issues such as social media strategy, dealing with consumer demands and how to get your website featured in the fashion pages. Further details can be found at www.manchesterfashion.com/events.

Clements & Church, the menswear brand, has employed a London-based tailor to facilitate its expansion into the capital. Martin O’Callaghan, who previously ran a Savile Row tailors, will be the company’s ‘travelling tailor’. Clements & Church has three Midlands-based stores in Birmingham, Solihull and Leamington Spa, with a fourth due to open in Oxford in the next few months. The launch of the company’s e-commerce site is also planned for early 2012.

Fallen Hero, managing director Des Comerford, is to pick up an award for the city of Scunthrope, in Lincolnshire, after it scooped the Google award for the fastest growing online hub, growing its online activity by more than 47% in a year. Young fashion indie Fallen Hero has increased its sales five fold since it launched its online store six years ago.

Revenue & Customs will target fashion firms employing unpaid interns in breach of minimum wage law, according to the Guardian. HMRC suspects interns are being used as workers rather than interns and have put together a 12-strong taskforce to inspect businesses. Since the 2008 credit crunch there has been a rise in the number of UK companies offering internships. Retailers such as Topshop, Urban Outfitters and fashion house Vivienne Westwood have advertised for internships which last over one month.

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