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Toast to rack up more stores after sales soar 30%

Contemporary womenswear retailer Toast is poised to double its retail presence in 2010 following strong sales in its existing stores and investment from owner French Connection.

Toast’s expansion will begin with the launch of its seventh store in Cheltenham on February 15, followed by a further five stores before the end of the year.

Toast managing director Jessica Seaton said: “We performed very strongly last year. Retail was up 30% on a like-for-like basis for the second half and in some stores the growth was in triple figures.”

However, she added that even though sales were strong during the half year, profit was only “slightly up” after the ongoing undisclosed investment by retailer French Connection was used to develop a new larger office, make appointments in the design and web teams and open a new warehouse.

The Cheltenham store will also be the first to be fitted out with Toast’s new design concept, which will feature quirky elements such as a hidden till point and a tea room.

Toast will relaunch its website on Monday with interactive elements such as video content of new collections and editorial on the story behind sourcing and photo shoots.

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