Discount tailoring chain Slater Menswear is reviewing its pricing position as its customers move more upmarket.
The 24-store chain, which sells brands such as Daniel Hechter, Ted Baker and Aquascutum at discounts of up to 40%, is in talks with brands about selling more of a full-price offer.
Suit prices start from as little as £29 and go up to £325 at the chain, which is used by many brands to sell end-of-season stock. The retailer’s shift towards a full-price offer is understood to be a reaction to the rising number of super-markets and value retailers moving into the low- and mid-price suiting market.
Managing director Paul Slater declined to comment on whether the retailer would become a totally full-price chain, but said: “We are looking at repositioning. Every retailer in the middle market has been a little envious of the supermarkets and their share of the value suit sector. But if people want to buy a £15 suit with their can of beans, that’s fine – our customers say they want a little more quality. We’re talking to brands about being more sympathetic to their prices.”
Slater Menswear typically trades from first-floor locations to keep its rental costs down.
One menswear operator said: “People tend to go to Slater for a deal, and retailing from first-floor premises is not the best if you want to sell full-price designer brands. However, it is a great business with a great team so I’m sure it will come up with a strategy that will work for it.”
Slater launched a more upmarket shopfit at its Man-chester store in November 2006. It has put the same look into a Norwich store and is planning up to three more revamps this year.