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Rare to broaden appeal with new sub-brands

Women’s young fashion brand Rare is to launch a premium collection next week targeting luxury retailers and department stores.

Rare will unveil premium brand Rare Opulence at trade show Pure London on Sunday, as part of plans to hit a three-year turnover target of £50m by 2015.

Liverpool-based Rare, which was founded in 1999, has projected sales of £15m over the year to May 2009.

Chief executive John Quinn said Rare Opulence, which is priced 50% above the mainline, will allow the brand to tap into a new consumer.

“This is a niche range targeting the fashion-aware customer,” he said. “It’s about intricate detailing and luxurious fabrics.”

Rare was founded in 1999 and launched concessions in Topshop in 2001. The brand is now sold in 38 Topshop stores nationwide, including London Oxford Street. According to the brand, Rare is Topshop’s fastest-growing womenswear concession. It has 180 stockists.

Rare is also sold via Asos, Littlewoods, House of Fraser and independents. Rare Opulence is geared towards premium indies and department stores such as Selfridges.

The 15-piece range is priced from £25 to £40, while the mainline starts at £14.

Quinn is also mooting the launch of a casual collection called Ink, under the Rare brand umbrella, at young fashion trade show Bread & Butter Berlin next July. “It’s very early days. The brand is being created under the name Ink. It’s going to focus on innovative prints and vest tops,” he said.

Standalone stores are also part of the brand’s growth strategy, with six stores planned to open by 2015.

Quinn said he wants to open a store on Oxford Street and further stores in other “strategic locations.” He added: “We have signed a distributor in Scandinavia. We’d like to go into Germany and Holland as part of our international expansion plans.”

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