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G-Star recruits partners for franchise store assault

Dutch denim giant G-Star will open 30 franchise stores within the next five years as part of an ambitious mono-brand store expansion strategy.

G-Star has 265 wholesale accounts in the UK and operates 20 franchise stores in partnership with leading UK indies including Birmingham-based Diffusion, Edinburgh-based Xile and Choice in Essex.

G-Star UK sales manager Tom Duncan said: “The financial climate has thrown up new opportunities for stores and although retail is difficult for some, it isn’t if you have a strong concept.”

Potential franchise partners do not have to be current stockists of the brand but are expected to have a passion for the product, local market expertise and a proven business track record.

Franchisees will benefit from support from a dedicated G-Star retail back office.

The brand said it was mindful of balancing the franchise operation with its wholesale account base.

The brand wants stores averaging 2,000 sq ft on key high streets and in high-profile shopping centres and is targeting London’s Oxford Street as a potential location.

Raw Essentials

G-Star launched premium brand Raw Essentials at Bread & Butter in Berlin last week. The collection, priced 40% higher than the core G-Star range, targets denim specialists and premium retailers.

Standout pieces include unwashed, selvedge denim in a signature tapered fit and a yellow pure wool duffle coat for women. Outerwear, knitwear and jersey also feature. Wholesale prices range from £50 to £205.

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