Private sales site Vente-Privee will push into categories beyond its core fashion offer as it chases growth in the UK.
Across the business sales increased 33% last year to £610m in 2009 and it expects turnover in the UK to rocket 167% this year to reach £7.2m.
UK country director Bunty Stokes said that, as with the French business, she will seek tie-ups with non-fashion brands. “We recently sold some West End theatre tickets and had great feedback,” she said.
The French arm sells products ranging from wine, cars and houses, and Stokes said she will test a variety of new items and see what proves popular with the UK customer.
She said that brands are beginning to up stock levels again. Stokes observed: “People were quite conservative with their buying last year but some brands have now admitted that they were too lean and did not sometimes have enough for their full price sales. They also know that they can make money in the off-price market with the right partner.”
Stokes said that one of her aims for 2010 is to educate the British consumer about how private sales - which are open only to invited members - work. “I don’t think people really understand it yet,” she said. With increasing scale she hopes this will change.
The retailer will increase the number of sales held per month. Since Stokes joined in June, sales - which include brands for up to 70% off - have increased from 12 a month to 45.