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Multichannel key to growth, says White Stuff boss

White Stuff chief executive Jeremy Seigal has attributed the lifestyle retailer’s growth to a strong multichannel proposition.

White Stuff’s sales increased 13.6% to £131.4m in the year to May 2. Online sales increased by 37% and now account for 25% of total sales, up from 21% in 2014.

“Having stores is a much more exciting prospect than being a pure-play etailer as you have that interaction with customers,” Seigal told Drapers.

“All retailers want to boost footfall, so if that comes because of click-and-collect or returns we welcome it and harness the importance of having shoppers in store where they can add to their spend.”

White Stuff opened eight stores in the UK during the period, in locations such as Inverness, Manchester and Bromley, bringing the total to 95.

Seigal said there is room for further expansion in the UK to support its online offering.

“We are looking at a few more locations and there are new catchments we have yet to access. The penetration of a retailer, both in brand recognition and online sales, is enhanced by having a physical presence in the area.”

Sales were strong across all categories for the business, with dresses and jersey tops selling well in womenswear and jackets topping the list for menswear.

In relation to current trading, Seigal said the business has split the front stores between Sale items and new-season stock and he expects to be out of Sale by the beginning of next week.

“Even though retailers blame the weather, you have to make the best of it. Our transitional ranges have been well received and I’m confident for the rest of the year; we will continue to deliver growth.”

 

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