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Ted Baker boss praises ‘sensible budget’

Ted Baker founder and chief executive Ray Kelvin praised the “sensible budget” presented by chancellor George Osborne yesterday and said the economy is in a better shape, as he announced annual profits soared by 25%.  

“I don’t think the government has been trying to buy many voters and it has the economy at its heart,” he said. “Things are more buoyant now and there’s more stability.”

It comes as the company reported group revenue increased 20.4% to £387.6m for the full year to January 31, while profit before tax increased by 25.3% to £48.8m.

Retail sales in the UK and Europe increased 16.7% to £231.8m, while sales in the US and Canada were up by 24.9% to £63.3m.

Many retailers have referred to the highly promotional environment in the UK, but he said: “Discounting is not an issue for us because we have two major Sales a year and that is it.”

Kelvin said future growth would come from overseas rather than the domestic market, although the UK is continuing to perform well.

“We have enough coverage in the UK so we may open the odd shop here and there, but not a major push,” he said. “We will be looking to the US and Canada, as well as Asia. We are opening a new store in Hong Kong at the end of April, which is building our presence there.”

In the UK, Ted Baker is set to open concept store to showcase all of its licence products in Spitalfields, London, in late spring.

The 6,000 sq ft warehouse-style space on Commercial Road will be a new retail format devoted to showcasing the Ted Baker brand and licensed products, said Kelvin. Ted Baker licence products include footwear, accessories, luggage and homewares.

Last week Ted Baker also signed a deal with property group THAT Bournemouth Company to provide design services of the 15 luxury penthouse apartments in Bournemouth and a licence for marketing those apartments ‘Styled by Ted Baker’ for a fee of £250,000.

Kelvin and finance director Lindsay Page are both directors and shareholders of the property group THAT.


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