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Seasalt opens 10th store as wholesale trade booms

Organic-led clothing independent Seasalt has opened its 10th store, in Guernsey, and first Sale shop in Salcombe, Devon.

Seasalt, which was founded in 1981, sells a product mix of 40% own label, with the rest of its offer made up of brands including White Stuff, El Naturalista, Oska and Saltwater.

Womenswear accounts for 80% of Seasalt’s sales, but its stores also offer menswear, kidswear and accessories.

The retailer also launched a transactional website two years ago and co-owner Neil Chadwick said he expects the site, which contributes 5% of total turnover, to become “as busy as one of the standalone stores”, eventually accounting for about 30% of turnover.

He added that a large proportion of the retailer’s growth over the next 12 months would come from Seasalt’s wholesale business. “Wholesale sales are up 300% over the year,” he said.

“We used to show at organic trade shows, but since exhibiting at Pure and Moda last season the response has been overwhelming. We’re primarily a fashion business with environmental credentials.”

Seasalt has 140 wholesale accounts – mainly with independents – and aims to increase the number to 220 over the next year.
Chadwick said: “Even though we’re looking to grow, we’re being quite protective over our distribution by making sure we’re in the right retailers.

As he focuses on developing Seasalt’s own label, Chadwick has appointed former Fat Face garment technologist Lucy Panniers to the role of senior garment technologist. “We’re investing heavily in design and marketing,” Chadwick said.

In 2005 Seasalt became the first fashion brand to have garments certified by the Soil Association.

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