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Reiss broadens its pricing as overseas expansion hots up

Reiss is overhauling its price architecture to broaden its appeal, as annual operating profits look set to hit almost £10 million.

In exclusive figures revealed to Drapers, the 54-store chain said it was expecting profit before tax to soar by about 30% for the year to January 31. Sales are expected to rise by about 25% to just under £57m when its files its accounts next month.

Managing director David Reiss told Drapers that the business was adding more entry-level price points and premium-level product to widen its appeal. The move follows a successful trial of a capsule collection of lower-priced dresses.

"The core product will stay the same, but we want to bring in more entry price points and more premium product," said Reiss. "Prices on women's knits might start at about £50, compared with £70. We want to have more dresses at about £80, where the average is £100.

"We will also introduce suits at the £500 mark, as well as the current £400 level. We want to create that affordable luxury, but the product will still have the distinctive Reiss handwriting."

The 54-strong chain is also ramping up its overseas growth, with a 12,000 sq ft US flagship launching in Los Angeles next week.

The store, on North Robertson Boulevard in Beverly Hills, will sell the retailer's entire range and will be more than double the size of its flagship store in New York.

Elements of the concept will be transferred to the new UK flagship and HQ in the former London College of Fashion building in Barrett Street, which opens in October. The 9,000 sq ft store will be the blueprint for future UK openings.

"The Los Angeles store will be very different - cool, bright and sophisticated with things like VIP areas," said Reiss.

REISS AT A GLANCE

Year to January 31 2007

Profit before tax: just over £9m, up from more than £6m last year

Operating profit: just under £10m, compared with £7m last year

Turnover: just under £57m, compared with £45m last year

- Reiss's 12,000 sq ft Los Angeles flagship opens next week

- Stores planned for Miami and New Jersey, bringing US total to 10. Up to 50 US shops planned by 2010

- Franchise stores to open in Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong this autumn

- Five accessories standalones to launch by the end of the year, including in Islington, Hampstead and Canary Wharf. Bigger dedicated accessories areas in larger Reiss stores

- London Selfridges concession will be rolled out to other Selfridges stores

- Transactional website to launch in August.

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