Italian plimsoll brand Superga opened its first UK standalone store on Neal Street in London’s Covent Garden yesterday, which aims to give UK consumers a complete “brand flavour”.
The store will sell the full range of Superga plimsolls available in the UK, as well as being the first store to stock the brand’s Wellington boots, which are already being sold online via www.superga.co.uk.
Superga, which celebrates its centenary this year, already has 50 standalone stores worldwide in locations including Italy and South Africa.
According to Simon Bamber, chief executive of GLInvest, which owns the UK licensing and distribution rights for Superga, the decision to open a UK standalone was taken to enable the brand to showcase more of its collection.
“It’s not just about sales,” said Bamber, “it’s about us being able to communicate directly with the consumer and also for us to showcase much more of our collection than is possible through our wholesale channel.”
The brand, which has about 80 UK and Republic of Ireland stockists including Soletrader and Schuh, is best known for its classic canvas 2750 style, which retails for about £40. To celebrate its centenary this year, the brand signed TV presenter Alexa Chung for its ad campaign.
Bamber has no plans for further UK standalone stores but said he would not rule it out in future.
“We remain open to the possibility if we feel it is an opportunity to communicate our collection of products effectively to the consumer in order to build further awareness of the brand,” he said.
Neal Street was chosen as the store location because of its mix of local shoppers and tourists.