Ben Sherman to boost brand via 20 concessions

Fashion brand Ben Sherman is back on the expansion trail, following its buy-out last month.

Chief executive Miles Gray said store openings had been on hold as majority shareholder 3i negotiated the sale of its stake.

Ben Sherman is targeting two standalones and 20 womenswear concessions in the UK over the next 12 months. The first store will open in Glasgow or Manchester next spring.

Womenswear concessions in Debenhams, Top Shop and Allders outlets will open over the next few months, and a New York store is planned for next spring.

Gray said the retail push will act as a marketing tool to elevate the brand. 'We want to trade up, and one of the vehicles for doing that is to showcase ourselves as we want to be seen,' he said.

The concessions will boost Ben Sherman's womenswear sales, which at the moment account for 18 per cent of all clothing sales at the retailer.

Gray said womenswear could represent a third of sales.

Separately, Ben Sherman finance director Mike Lamont is leaving to manage his own company.