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Religion expands abroad via franchise stores

Young fashion brand Religion is growing its international presence this summer with franchise stores in Singapore, Paris, Barcelona and Playa de Aro on Spain’s Costa Brava.

The British brand already has franchise stores in Ibiza and Puerto Banús, near Marbella in Spain and Hong Kong, and three standalone stores in Bali – the most recent opened at the end of April.

Chief executive Jamie Lloyd told Drapers there was a “natural relationship” between the brand and the Spanish market. “The Ibiza store has done extremely well; it has doubled our expectations in fact. With the Barcelona shop, the relaxed style and that cool, globetrotting customer is a perfect fit for Religion.”

Lloyd said the business is not looking to open any new UK stores – it has three in London – but it is seeking new wholesale stockists. “The core of our UK business is wholesale and we want to continue to support our customers as well as adding to our stockist base.”

Religion wants to sign up new womenswear boutiques to its predominantly young fashion clientele in order to promote the “more sophisticated” part of its women’s collection, which includes chiffon blouses and printed silk dresses. Religion has 300 stockists in the UK including Selfridges, Topshop, Asos and Diffusion.

As a result the brand will show at the next edition of Scoop at London’s Saatchi and Phillips galleries on July 13-15.

Religion has more than 300 pieces in its range and offer four collections per year, which drop in February, May, August and October.

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