The massive menswear brand has joined forces with kidswear giant CWF to tackle boyswear and girlswear.
For years kidswear retailers anticipated the prospect of getting their mitts on a Hugo Boss collection. There was a ready-made market of parents already convinced of the brand’s values, yet with no way of buying into it for their kids.
But after much hand-wringing from indies, and in time for spring 09, the brand duly launched its debut kids’ range. That first range was ushered in as Boss Orange Kidswear and was aimed at four- to 14-year-olds.
But just a year later, Hugo Boss has inked a licensing deal with Children Worldwide Fashion (CWF), the kidswear giant behind premium collections such as DKNY, Chloé, Elle, Escada, Burberry and Timberland. The CWF range launches for spring 10 and this has really got the retailers’ mouths watering.
The new deal means there will be a more comprehensive offer, with four collections in boyswear and two in girlswear. Although an expansion of the girlswear offer is planned for autumn 10, the emphasis on the boys’ side has been well received.
According to a spokeswoman for CWF, the collection will be unflinchingly redolent of the grown-up Hugo Boss clobber. “The kidswear collection is directly inspired by the distinctive
positioning of the Boss adult brands. It is not a copy and paste, but features iconic details like the buttons and metal parts,” she says.
It’s with typical gusto that the brand and its licensee are bringing the collection, which in CWF terms is priced between DKNY and Burberry, to market. The ambition is, simply, to make the range one of the top 10 brands in the European kidswear market. The Middle East, Russia, Canada and Australia are all on track to launch for spring 10, but Asia and the US have been put on the backburner, now pegged until 2011.
In the UK, Lisa Gimson, kidswear manager at Middlesbrough indie department store Psyche, says the brand is selling very well and has higher sell-through than rivals. “Hugo Boss is a well-known, trusted brand. Our current bestseller is a pair of logoed jeans”.
Nick Bassi, owner of indie and etailer Childsplay in Ilford, Essex, will stock the brand next season because of the link with CWF. “Deliveries will be on time and it will be of good quality,” he says.
For others, it’s just a case of meeting that long-standing demand. Jodie Butler, manager of Leicester indie Jellyrolls, will stock the range simply because her customers, who regularly buy Hugo Boss for themselves, have kept asking about the existence of a kids’ range.
What a relief to finally be able to quench that thirst.
Starting point for wholesale prices, which go up to £290
Number of styles in the collection
The split between boyswear and girlswear in the collection
Hugo Boss Kidswear 020 8964 8605 www.cwf.fr