It is the first store opening for the 11-store retailer since the early 2000s and comes as Beales prepares to push the button on further expansion following stakebuilding by shareholder and property entrepreneur Andrew Perloff.
The 14,000 sq ft Beales For Men store includes young fashion brands Wrangler, Ben Sherman, Duck And Cover, Peter Werth and Jack & Jones, alongside Beales’ recently launched menswear own-brand REDi. The latter features knitwear priced at £32, polo shirts at £25 and T-shirts at £19.
Beales will also launch a range of football World Cup-related products in time for the tournament in the summer, in collaboration with retail guru and GIVe founder George Davies. The range will be influenced by the football strips of the England, Brazil, Spain and Italy teams.
Last month Beales, traditionally known for its more classic offer, unveiled a men’s young fashion area in its flagship Bournemouth store after a trial in its Kendal branch in Cumbria. Beales wants to increase incremental sales from its menswear business by 30% from the young fashion brands.
Beales chief executive Tony Brown told Drapers that it could sustain a 25 to 30-store business before it would be forced to alter its independent retailer model and infrastructure. Brown said Beales, which operates in market towns such as Bolton, Yeovil and Poole and is part of the independent buying group via independent department store group AIS, planned to keep its local business focus.
He said: “We have ambitions to grow the business; we have the wherewithal. We’re looking at specific opportunities. We will go into other locations. There is an opportunity to take high street space.”
Perloff, who increased his stake in the listed business to 29.7% in February, has said he will back the business’s growth plans, which could include acquisitions. Perloff launched a failed takeover attempt for Beales in 2008.
In January, Beales said it had reduced pre-tax losses by 35% to £990,000 in the year to October 31.