Young fashion brand Superdry has been struggling to meet orders of its heavy winter outerwear due to manufacturing delays, prompting some stockists to cancel orders.
Parent company SuperGroup reported a “very strong” start to retail sales of its jackets in its first-quarter results in September, but an unconfirmed number of independent stockists have yet to receive outerwear product. It was due to be delivered between July 15 and October 15, but will be up to a month late when it arrives in the next two weeks as expected.
SuperGroup chief executive Julian Dunkerton told Drapers there had been a problem at one of the company’s factories. He would not reveal which one was at fault but it is understood to be in China. “It has caused a knock-on effect with jackets and deliveries have been sluggish,” he said.
A minor number of stockists had cancelled orders as a result, he said, but declined to comment further.
The manufacturing delays have hit both men’s and women’s jackets. One indie said the lack of heavy-duty Superdry outerwear had helped drive sales of the brand’s lighter-weight Polar Windcheater women’s jacket, highlighted as one of SuperGroup’s top five selling items in its second-quarter results this week.
The Superdry stockist added that he had reduced his original order from five men’s jacket styles to three, after being convinced by the brand not to cancel the order altogether. “Superdry has never had great success with stock deliveries but there have been a lot of problems in China too. It’s annoying, because Superdry is selling so well, but at least it’s only the jackets.”
Dunkerton said Superdry’s full product range had performed well over the second quarter to October 31, with womenswear accounting for two of its top five selling items, including the Polar Windcheater.
He added that spring 11 order books were “not totally” closed but that he was “very happy” with orders to date, and that footwear was looking particularly strong for the season after the brand bolstered its design team.
Total group sales at SuperGroup surged 68.4% to £57.5m for the third quarter. Retail sales climbed 78.6% to £32.1m, driven by its strong and expanding UK business. Wholesale trading increased 57% to £25.4m, driven by international expansion.
Over the first half of the year to August 1, group sales jumped 65.1% to £90.3m, while retail sales climbed 71.1% to £54.4m.
SuperGroup has 55 stores in the UK, with openings in Bournemouth and Solihull over the third quarter, and further stores are planned for Manchester Trafford Centre and Westfield London.