Christopher Kane will launch an online store as part of plans to “take it to the next level”, after French luxury group PPR took control of the designer label.
PPR, which also owns Alexander McQueen and Stella McCartney, bought a 51% stake in the British label this week.
Speaking to Drapers, Alexis Babeau, managing director of PPR, said the company takes ecommerce “extremely seriously” and that it had already started work on developing the right online experience for Christopher Kane. However, he added that he could not “commit” to launching a site this year.
He said: “It is an important aspect for luxury, but we have to do things properly and provide the customer with the right shopping experience.”
Christopher Kane will also begin searching for its first store, which could open as early as next year. Babeausaid: “Our vision is to grow the brand, starting with a retail presence. We will now start looking for the right location in London.”
He said there was no “ready-made plan” for Christopher Kane’s roll-out but it would open stores “gradually”, pointing to the expansion of Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen, which opened about 20 stores in 12 years.
Plans will include international retail expansion, particularly in Asia. Babeau said: “We have a strong presence in Europe and a nice presence in the US, but we could have more in Asia.” He added that the brand expected to open in Paris, Milan, New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Beijing, Shanghai and Singapore.
Babeau said Christopher Kane would look to further develop its accessories and leather goods ranges, which account for about 4% of the business. However, Babeau stressed that there are no plans for a diffusion line,
Christopher Kane, which is wholesaled through 200 doors worldwide, was launched in 2006 by Kane and his sister Tammy following his graduation. It extended into menswear in 2010. The label’s head office, which has 26 employees, will remain in London and Kane will continue to show in the city.
Babeau said PPR is keen to retain the label’s family feel and British appeal. “We like it to be a British brand. We are not planning to implement a big change, but it will grow where it needs to.”