Footwear brand Dr Martens aims to double its store count as its retail business takes on increasing importance.

Dr Martens, which has built its UK portfolio from three to 12 company-owned stores in the past three years, intends to increase the number to 25.

Store openings are also planned overseas, where it has 18 company-owned branches at present.

Chief executive David Suddens said: “The brand was under-distributed. It was difficult to get the product in front of the consumer, it was difficult to get retailers to take our full range, so we have decided to open more of our own stores.”

Retail including ecommerce has risen from 11% of revenue three years ago to just under 30% at present. Suddens said that he believes he can build that to 50%. Dr Martens UK head of retail Debbie Morgan said negotiations are under way for three premises including one in Brighton.

She said the retailer is seeking “iconic” locations, although a foray into shopping centres such as the Bullring in Birmingham and Liverpool One have been successful.