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Jane Norman plots high street revival following brand refresh

Jane Norman is eyeing locations for a London flagship just over a year after it disappeared from the high street.

The young fashion chain’s 24 stores closed last summer after it went into administration but it continued to trade online and through concessions. This week it unveiled a brand refresh, including a new logo, revamped website and extended product range.

A store is likely to follow in 2016, head of buying Sheila Clancy told Drapers. “We will have a flagship and I’m sure there will be [other] stores in the future; we just need to pick our locations,” she added.

While still doing the bodycon dresses it is known for, Jane Norman has widened its offer for autumn 15 to include more separates, jeans, outerwear and nightwear. It has also introduced a broader range of sizes, up to a size 18.

“We want to dress [the customer] from the moment she gets up in the morning to the moment she goes to bed,” said Clancy.

Exit level prices are slightly higher thanks to the addition of more occasionwear and embellishment. For the autumn 15 collection, a fake fur leopard coat is priced at £85, a peplum dress at £65 and a wrap jumpsuit at £45. Jane Norman does not wholesale, but Clancy said this could be an option in the future.

Footwear, which was rested for autumn 15, will be reintroduced for spring 16 with 20 options. Accessories and nightwear will also be expanded next year and the brand is considering a foray into activewear. “Our customers keep their body in shape because they love to look good and be seen,” explained Clancy.

The website, janenorman.co.uk, relaunched on Tuesday with a new, pared back logo, which no longer has hearts around it. Every item of clothing has now been shot on a model, rather than as still life, and a video preview is available.

Jane Norman AW15 applique bardot dress (£45)

Jane Norman AW15 applique bardot dress (£45)

Edinburgh Woollen Mill bought Jane Norman out of administration in 2011, in a pre-pack deal. The chain had been forced to temporarily close its stores as it struggled with cash-flow issues, but they subsequently reopened.

It fell into administration again in June 2014 and all 24 Jane Norman stores in the UK and Ireland closed for good within three months. However, it continued to trade online and through concessions, most of which are overseas, under the registered name Jane Norman International, which was incorporated in March 2014. The business has not disclosed its current turnover.

According to its website, the brand has five UK concessions, in House of Fraser in Oxford Street, Epsom, Birmingham and Telford, as well as Beales in Keighley, west Yorkshire. It has 74 outside the UK: two in Ireland (in Shaws department stores), 54 in the Netherlands (in Vroom & Dreesmann department stores) and 18 across the Middle East.

Clancy said she could see the brand going into the US in the near future.

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