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Surfwear brand Saltrock to open wave of stores

British surfwear brand Saltrock has unveiled plans to almost double its retail presence to 75 stores across the UK by the end of 2016, after its profits increased sixfold last year.

The Devon-based business, which also has 25 wholesale stockists, had 23 stores at end of 2014. It has opened 17 new stores, largely in coastal areas, so far this year, bringing its total to 40. It will open a further four by the end of 2015 in undisclosed locations. 

Next year it will open 31 stores, the locations of which are being negotiated. It will also run TV adverts for the first time.

Saltrock plans to launch the brand internationally from the fourth quarter of 2015, with localised ecommerce sites in Australia, the US and the Netherlands. 

In the first quarter of 2016, click-and-collect will be rolled out to all stores and Saltrock will begin selling through Amazon and eBay.

The multichannel expansion is led by former Edinburgh Woolen Mill group head of digital, Richie Jones, who joined the business as head of digital and marketing in February this year. 

Saltrock sells men’s, women’s and kidswear including T-shirts, hoodies, shirts, trousers and dresses. It declined to provide wholesale prices, but retail prices are about £12.99 for a T-shirt and £39.99 for a hoodie.

The company was founded in Cornwall in 1988 by brothers Ross and Angus Thomson. It fell into administration in 2010 following a tough trading period after the recession and was rescued later in the year by a consortium of investors led by ex-Citigroup banker James Brent and Devon businessman Alan Bassett. Today it employs 400 people. Angus and Ross are still at the business.

In the year to December 31, 2014, sales rose to £10.7m from £7.2m the year before. Pre-tax profits increased to £825,065 from £133,941, according to filings at Companies House. 

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