Nauticalia plans to franchise in Europe

Marine giftware specialist Nauticalia is to establish an overseas franchise operation and extend its UK presence.

The 12-store retailer, which also has a mail order and Internet business, plans to open a further eight British shops over the next few years, as well as crossing the Channel to dock on the Continent.

Managing director Chris Murdoch, who took up the role last week when founder Lynn Lewis moved up to the position of chairman, said that Nauticalia is planning a European franchise operation and has earmarked Dublin, Amsterdam, Paris and Hamburg as potential store locations.

In the UK, Nauticalia aims to open in towns and cities such as Edinburgh, York and Oxford, where there are a high proportion of tourists.

Approximately 40 per cent of Nauticalia's£8 million annual sales are generated by its stores.