Hobbs boss Meg Lustman has insisted that international expansion has become “more attractive” since Brexit as it eyes standalone US stores.
The retailer currently has 14 concessions trading within US department store giant Bloomingdale’s and has taken its first steps into Germany through partnerships with Wohrl, SinnLeffers and Zalando.
Hobbs unveiled its full-year results today, including an 18% jump in EBITDA to £7.7m, which revealed that its fledgling international concessions were “outperforming expectations”.
Lustman said Hobbs was now “considering options” to grow its international footprint and has targeted standalone stores, despite the UK’s impending exit from the European Union following last month’s shock referendum result.
Asked what impact Brexit would have on its overseas ambitions, Lustman told Retail Week: “I think it makes international even more attractive because we become more attractive to international customers.
“The opportunity internationally is exciting, so it hasn’t changed our appetite for international at all.”
Lustman would not be drawn on whether Hobbs would target new markets as part of its push overseas, but said it was already eyeing a move to open standalone stores in the US, as part of wider designs to compete with Ted Baker and Karen Millen on foreign shores.
“Once we’ve established that there’s a match between what we offer and what the customer wants, then yes, of course, we’d want to move into standalone stores,” Lustman said.
“We are considering that in the US as we speak. I look at my competitors like Karen Millen and Ted Baker and I would hope that we could have a penetration that’s aligned with theirs.”