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F&F is a 'strong standalone business' says brand director

Tesco’s clothing arm F&F is a “strong standalone business” according to its brand and marketing director Chris Other.

Ahead of Tesco’s preliminary results announcement on April 22, in which the struggling supermarket reported a £6.4bn deficit, Other told Drapers: “F&F is still a big part of Tesco, but it’s a strong standalone business. It’s also growing internationally through franchise stores.”

Other said standalone F&F shops in the UK were not yet on the cards, but it is an “aspiration” for the business.

F&F has worked on improving the fashionability of its product over the last number of seasons in order to compete with the high street.

Other said: “It’s an evolution for F&F. We relaunched a few years ago and we want to be an affordable fashion brand, but you need that fashion credibility. It’s very important for us. We want our buying team to lead the way and deliver strong products.”

F&F chief executive Richard Collins said the business had added more detailed pieces, embellishment and real leather for autumn 15.

“We have worked on developing detail and bringing that wow factor to the ranges. We have better fashion credentials and more detail on product - it has been a conscious journey for us.”

He added: “We were criticised five years ago that the silhouette of our products were not right. Our buyers have worked hard to improve our fashionability. We want to be a leading retailer for affordable, competitive and fashionable product; that blend isn’t 100% yet but we’re making progress. On womenswear especially the product has become more exciting.”

Former BHS managing director Richard Price will join F&F this summer as chief executive. It is not known if Collins will take up another role in the business.

Readers' comments (3)

  • F&F could indeed be massive. I doubt they've unlocked 10% of their potential. Ranges have definitely improved and TV ads have been better than some major brands.

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  • Seriously ? Get real....there are so many fashion / clothing specialists at the value end of the market ahead of you that you are not and will never be the destination store for the majority of potential customers in the demographic that you serve.

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  • Tesco have a Finest range, so they can do the same with clothing. They have a broad customer base and value (as in cheap cheap) is not necessarily their sweetspot.

    Value for money is what matters and their footfall and frequency of visit means they have an audience to tempt.

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