New Look is to revamp all of its stores after a successful trial, and move into new markets including Ukraine, Poland and Singapore.
The private-equity backed retailer – which this week revealed a record full-year performance – will roll out the store concept unveiled at its Liverpool One and Westfield London stores to all new stores and bring elements to existing stores.
Chief executive Carl McPhail said: “Increasingly, with the success of e-commerce, we are beginning to review our portfolio and space.”
The retailer has completed a six-store trial, reflecting each of the retailer’s different store sizes, and will roll out the new look to stores in its international markets.
McPhail said New Look, which opened its third store in Russia this week in St Petersburg, is “very close” to signing a deal to open in Ukraine and Poland via the franchise route. It has also signed to open two franchise stores in Singapore. It will open two stores in Holland, which will be company owned, adding to its European portfolio. It also wants to launch 20 stores in France and three in Belgium this year. It has 612 stores in the UK and Ireland, and will open a further 250,000 sq ft of trading space in the region this year.
The retailer will also invest £12m in a second generation website, which will go live in October, laying the foundations for customers to order out-of-stock products in-store for home delivery.
New Look wants online sales to represent 10 per cent of sales in the next three to four years, up from 3 per cent at the moment.
Group sales in the year to March 28 grew 14.9 per cent to £1.32bn, with EBITDA up 10.2 per cent to £217.6m. Like-for-like sales in the UK and Ireland rose 1.4 per cent.
New Look has benefited from the flight to value by shoppers during the recession and from an increased focus on in-house design and a strengthened management team as it embarks on plans to become a global fashion player.
McPhail said that it was gaining customers from discount fashion retailers attracted by New Look’s “fashion handwriting”.