Woolrich International has seen a strong performance across all channels and all markets, closing 2016 books with a 9 per cent plus in turnover to 190m dollars. The company has issued a positive outlook for 2017, set to be achieved by further expansion of its retail network to 33 single-brand stores.
EMEA was up 18 per cent, and APAC gained 21 per cent. In North America, a plan to reposition the brand and launch the Woolrich John Rich & Bros line in qualified wholesale and e-commerce channels is underway, with a dedicated investment plan to support the effort.
The direct to consumer route will be further enhanced through both expansion in bricks and mortar and e-commerce channels, including the opening of nine new stores in addition to the currently 24. Recent openings include Tokyo, Japan and Stuttgart, Germany. New Woolrich stores will be opened by the end of the year in other important capital cities, including Toronto in Canada, Düsseldorf in Germany and the first flagship store in Milan, Italy.
The 700-square metre space in the heart of the fashion quarter will be the blueprint for the brand’s new retail concept, which includes the introduction of collaborations with outside names and innovative developments in terms of omni-channel and digital outlets.
“The store in Milan will be a chance to experiment with a new retail model”, explains Andrea Canè, global creative director. “The bricks and mortar stores are and will continue to be important, but they have to evolve, offering not just products but also services and experiences. I like to think of the flagship store in Milan as a lounge, a comfortable place to spend time characterised by attention to the customer, and a hub of experimentation and cross-pollination.”
The development of the e-commerce channel continues in double digits in all markets, with plans to invest in digital marketing and social media around the globe.
Founded in Woolrich, Pennsylvania in 1830, Woolrich is America’s oldest brand of outdoor clothing. Woolrich International was created in November 2016 through the merger of Woolrich Europe and Woolrich Inc.