• Boux Avenue international stores to grow tenfold from 10 to 100 over next two years
  • Brand posted like-for-like increase of 18.3% for year-ending March 29 2015
  • Poaches Mothercare executive to be first head of international.
  • Group rolling out cross-brand click-and-collect

Boux Avenue is expecting overseas stores to soon outnumber its UK shops as it ramps up expansion overseas, driven by its first head of international.

The lingerie specialist, which last week posted a like-for-like jump of 18.9% in the year ending March 29 2015, currently has 10 international stores but chief executive Theo Paphitis has stated his ambition to have 100 stores globally in the next two years.

The retailer has also hired its first head of international.

Bev Murigneux joined Boux Avenue this month from Mothercare, where she was international development manager for the Indian subcontinent and Central and Latin America.

From 2005-2010 she was group international operations manager at the nursery and childcare store.

Paphitis told Retail Week: “Any day now you will see international stores outnumbering UK stores. We said we would open 25 to 30 stores and we will probably open 30-35 in the UK.

”Our growth is very much international too, as well as online. Our online business is doing stonkingly well.

“We’ve taken a big slice of the market. 

“It is a start-up business and last year we reduced losses; this is a key year for us coming up.”

Paphitis added that the biggest international markets for Boux Avenue were across the Middle East and in North African countries, including Libya.

Cross-brand click-and-collect

The Theo Pathitis Retail Group has recently invested in its fulfilment centres, completing a new warehouse in Hemel Hempstead which enables it to offer cross-brand click-and-collect. It allows shoppers to order online from one retailer in the group and pick up at another.

All Boux Avenue stores and some Ryman shops are already leveraging the scheme, which will roll out across remaining Ryman and Robert Dyas branches over the next few months.

Paphitis added that the group’s decision not to discount prior to Christmas was not an easy one.

He said: “To be perfectly frank, I questioned it every single day. You make that decision and you stick to it but every day you question it. In the end it was absolutely right but I wouldn’t be being honest if I said it was a slam dunk, obvious decision.”

Margins at all three retailers increased in the six weeks to December 24 as a result of the group’s full price stance.