The Conran Shop is trialling a smaller store format that could be used to extend the brand into new locations in the UK or overseas.
Last week Sir Terence Conran’s furniture and homewares business launched a 900 sq ft pop-up store in Westfield London showcasing its entry price point product range Well Considered.
The store will be open until early June, but managing director Nick Moore sees potential for the format to be used on a permanent basis by international franchisees to open more stores, and also potentially in other UK centres like Manchester or Glasgow if it was successful.
“Until now the only option has been 16,000 sq ft to 20,000 sq ft flagship stores, but this gives us another element in the toolkit which we can take to franchisees,” said Moore. “A brand like Conran has to be finding new things to do, new things to try.”
The store was opened by Conran last Wednesday and showcases 80 of the 88 lines in the Well Considered range. The range was launched last year in response to the recession and now accounts for 20% of Conran Shop’s sales. It is to be extended to 200 lines this autumn.
Moore said he expected the business to move into profit next year for the first time in a decade, after reducing losses by 40% in the financial year that ended March 31. Sales at its two London stores climbed 8% over the year, but performance was held back by its New York store - which is being relocated from a low footfall location on the Upper East Side to the basement of famed flooring store ABC Carpets - and a change of franchisee in Japan.