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Diesel's premium focus leads to Littlewoods and Very withdrawal

Diesel will withdraw from, Littlewoods and Very and look to grow its Black Gold sub-brand, as it continues to seek a more premium positioning.

Drapers revealed last month that Diesel will withdraw from multi-brand retailer USC after spring 15. It is now understood it will also stop selling its products through from autumn 14 and Shop Direct’s Littlewoods and Very from spring 15 for women’s and autumn 15 for men’s.

As the brand increasingly seeks to become more premium, Diesel is expected to consider selling both Diesel and sub-brand Black Gold on Shop Direct’s new premium site Very Exclusive, which will launch in February.

Jonny Hewlett, Diesel’s managing director for the UK and Northern Europe, told Drapers the company is currently assessing its approximately 120 UK independent stockists with a view to moving towards a more premium distribution for the brand. While stockists could change, this is not expected to affect the overall number.

The Black Gold sub-brand will be rolled out to other leading global cities and premium department stores, following the opening of the London store on Conduit Street in June.

Hewlett said locations could include Shanghai, Milan, Paris and Tokyo. He said Black Gold hopes to have two of these opened in the next 18 months, although he would not be drawn on which cities would open first. Diesel already has a store on Greene Street in New York.

The business also plans to open concessions in premium department stores in the future, both in the UK and internationally, and will consider introducing Black Gold into larger existing Diesel stores or any new stores acquired.

Hewlett added there was still scope for new Diesel stores in central London.

Next has not yet responded to requests for comment.

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