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Gieves & Hawkes ramps up expansion

Gieves & Hawkes is expanding its bespoke offer internationally, revamping its made-to-measure service and relaunching its website. 

The brand, founded in 1771, will host bespoke trunk shows in the Middle East and Asia for the first time this year. Gieves & Hawkes’ head cutters, who work out of the Savile Row store, will travel to meet international clients for bespoke fittings, usually in locations where the tailor does not have bricks-and-mortar stores. 

The head cutters will visit Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and in Asia they will set up shop for a week in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing and Tapei in May. 

Dallas, Texas, will be added to the existing US schedule of New York and Los Angeles.

“Bespoke is seeing year-on-year growth and Davide Taub, our head cutter, has given us a positive platform to be investing in it,” managing director of the brand, Nick Keyte, told Drapers. “We have full backing and support from our board to accelerate bespoke growth rapidly because the model is proving to be successful.”

A third cutter and a fourth apprentice will join the company in May to support the new strategy.

Parallel to the push on bespoke, made-to-measure will be relaunched this spring with improved fits, a 20% increase in styles with a focus on outerwear, trousers and shirts and a redesign of all house fabrics.

Keyte said: “In made to measure the customers are focused primarily on the suiting proposition. We want to highlight the fact that we offer tuxedos and morning wear, and broaden our jacket and trouser offering.”

“We’re effectively aiming to offer a complete wardrobe for the customer.”

To support the expansion, Gieves & Hawkes plans to launch its redesigned ecommerce site in the coming month.

Focusing on improving key conversion metrics, the redesigned platform, provided by the brand’s agency, Like Digital, has improved personalisation options, user navigation and increased speed to basket.

Online sales currently account for just less than 10% and the brand has plans to grow this for 2019. 

“We’ve grown the mix of sales between online and instore by 50% year on year and our target is to get ecommerce sales to 20% of total sales in the next couple of years,” said Keyte.

Gieves & Hawkes’ offering covers four distinct areas: ready to wear, made to measure, bespoke and military, and creating a clear differentiation between each category has become a key focus for the brand.

Keyte said: “An important part of Gieves & Hawkes is that we offer all four of those services. We’re working very hard to define each proposition from each other and we’ve made big improvements in 2018.”

“We want to maintain that definition into this year with a continued focus on all things customisation and digital. We saw big bottom-line improvements last year and already sales are significantly up for us in 2019, so we are very encouraged.”

 

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