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Exclusive: Brands deliver growth in 2012

The branded sector experienced growth in 2012 with many brands positive about next year according to a Drapers survey.

In a survey carried out by Drapers into how the past year has been for brands, 51.9% of responses said 2012 had been more profitable than 2011. Of those surveyed 70.4% said they had increased the number of stockists over the last year.

Jas Aytan, director of men’s young fashion brand Criminal Damage, said this year had been more profitable, with the popularity of the label aided by products being worn by pop stars including Rihanna and Beyonce.

“We have offered the right product, to the right customer at the right prices, at the right time,” he said. “We found that more and more customers had in season spend budgeted towards brands like ourselves. This in tail allowed us to have a fast stream of moving fashion being developed, offered and delivered to the buyers.”

Distribution was the biggest challenge for brands over the year (35%), however it appeared there was an even spread of issues, with 30% of people saying the weather was the biggest challenge of 2012 and 20% saying the cost of manufacturing was the biggest problem.

Simon Poole, managing director of men’s young fashion brand Luke, said: “The biggest challenge this year has been economic uncertainty and the weather.”

Brands surveyed were hugely positive and over half (56%) of those surveyed said 2013 would hold growth, with just 8% believing that next year will bring declines. 32% said that 2013 would hold international launches and expansion.

Mark Ashton, managing director of women’s young fashion brand Little Mistress, said the biggest challenge over the last year had been keeping up with demand and the year ahead would see further growth from the brand.

Ashton said the brand would expand online into 11 countries would “increase Little Mistress distribution footprint into 12-15 more countries” in 2013.

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