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United Nude repositions ahead of retail push

Anglo-Dutch footwear brand United Nude is planning to reposition itself as a lifestyle brand ahead of a retail push in the UK and abroad.

United Nude closed its store at 80 Regent Street at the end of August after two years. It now plans to find a larger unit on the street, as well as additional stores elsewhere in London. 

Co-founder Rem D Koolhaas flew to the UK from his base in China last week to look at potential units.

He said: “The [Regent Street] store was too small for us, but we’re looking there again for a new store, as well as in Soho and other streets. We do well in London because it’s a city of tourists and they buy on impulse, especially when it’s a unique product like ours.”

Koolhaas founded the brand, which is known for its directional footwear styles for men and women, with Galahad Clark [of the Clarks shoes family] in 2009.

He is now looking to broaden its offer by increasing the number of bags and leather goods and introducing watches, sunglasses and jewellery early next year. The new stores will feature a 50/50 product mix of footwear and lifestyle products, a change from the current split of around 90/10.

Following the closure of Regent Street, United Nude has a single store in the UK in Covent Garden, London, and 10 outside the UK.

It is planning to open company-owned stores in Los Angeles and Amsterdam and franchise stores in Japan, China and Korea in 2016. 

United Nude won Designer of the Year at the 2015 Drapers Footwear Awards for its collaboration with Iris van Herpen.

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