Debenhams Plc

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UK: Prima Solutions Launches Supply Chain Software | 18 Jan 01

Prima Solutions has developed new supply chain software PrimaNet to cater for the whole retail range from websites to traditional stores. UK department store group Debenhams is one of the packages early customers. John Norman, joint managing director at Prima Solutions said: “We recently completed a roll out of a 500-user system across all Debenhams buying and merchandising departments. The application, PROMS (Pre-Order Management System), is a PrimaNet module which facilitates gradual build up of order details to the point of confirming an order, at which point that information is passed electronically to the Debenhams retail stock management system. The software also supports the typical product development process of specification, costing, size-grading and critical path.”

UK: Debenhams Extends Its Designer Stable | 21 Dec 00

Department store, Debenhams, is expanding its stable of designers, including a new bridal collection by top lingerie designer, Janet Reger. The store already has around 26 designers on its books, and this number will expand further in the New Year when several new ones are added to the list.

UK: Arcadia's New CEO Reviews The Business | 15 Dec 00

A review of the bumper Arcadia Group, owner of high street stores such as Dorothy Perkins, Burton Menswear and Top Shop, is currently underway. And that could mean changes are in the pipleline for Arcadia, under its new chief executive Stuart Rose. The ex-chief executive of British supermarket chain, Iceland Group Plc, took over as CEO of Arcadia the middle of last month.

Textiles in Turkey | 27 Nov 00

As one of the leading apparel and textile exporters to the European Union, Turkey has implemented a programme of investment to expand its production and servicing capabilities even further. Niki Tait visited the country's recent Global Sourcing Exhibition and reports on two companies that are looking to establish stronger ties with European markets.

UK: BhS Brings In Ex-Asda Chief Jane Mallin | 7 Nov 00

Former Wal-Mart Europe chief Allan Leighton has been appointed second-in-command at BhS, the retail chain that was acquired by entrepreneur Philip Green from Storehouse earlier this year.Leighton will work part-time with Terry Green, the Debenhams supremo who was poached by Philip Green in September.

UK: House Of Fraser Unveils Flagship Store | 24 Oct 00

UK department store retailer, House of Fraser, has unveiled its refurbished £18m flagship store in London's Oxford Street. And the flourishing store group, which recently announced it was creating 1,000 jobs over the next four years, has stepped back in time with the famous building, creating seven floors of luxury.

HONG KONG: Garment Manufacturers Install EDIasia | 20 Oct 00

E*Trade, the Sri Lankan distributor for EDIasia, has installed REDI-to-Wear in three of the country's most important garment manufacturers. Two of them, Hirdaramani Garments and Lux Shirts, are important suppliers to the New York based buying company Liz Claiborne Inc. EDIasia provides specialised business-to-business electronic commerce (EDI) solutions for Asian exporters in the textile and garment industries, and recognises that any change to business processes can be painful unless it is handled properly.

UK: Marks And Spencer Breaks The Brand Mould | 19 Oct 00

Battling Marks & Spencer is breaking new ground with a range of products sold under a brand name other than M&S or St Michael. The store is hoping heads will turn when it launches a designer range of hair care products, under the "MM Martyn Maxey" label. M&S has linked up with internationally-acclaimed hairdresser, Martyn Maxey, whose clients include Minnie Driver, Anneka Rice and Anna Ford, to launch the new range which goes on sale on Monday. A spokesman for M&S said: "We were looking to develop a new haircare range and a link was made with Martyn Maxey who is internationally-acclaimed." The move is a radical departure for the company, which has often used designers in the past, but has never put their names to the products. Other stores such as Debenhams are also using designer's names to boost sales. The store has several exclusive ranges including the new Rocha John Rocha clothing collection, but interestingly, has launched its own range of cosmetics called "MEA" and has just announced it plans to launch more own-range health and beauty products. The "MM Martyn Maxey" range at M&S will include cleansing, conditioning and styling products, together with a range of salon hair brushes and hair dryer. Martyn Maxey, once voted in the Top Five Stylists in the World by US Vogue, has exclusive salons in Mayfair in London, the Harbour Club and the Riverside club. He has also won a variety of awards, including Student Hairdresser of the Year and The Golden Scissors for Services to Hairdressing Industry in 1999.

UK: New Debenham's chief's vision for the future | 18 Oct 00

Newly appointed Debenhams' chief executive, Belinda Earl, has unveiled her plans to take the UK department store forward, which include linking up with sexy lingerie designer, Janet Reger. Ms Earl has announced plans to open more stores, add to the chain's international operations and launch more own-range health and beauty products. She said the store's strategy was to win more customers, make existing shoppers spend more and move into new markets. Full-year results for the store just released show that total sales were up 1.4 per cent at £1,397.9 million but profits down from £138.8 million to £129.6 million. Ms Earl said that according to independent research carried out by Verdict, Debenhams had increased its market share of the UK department store market to over 13 per cent. She said: "Over the last year, we have significantly outperformed our competitors. We have a clear strategy to drive future profitability and grow market share. This being achieved by increasing sales to our existing customers, attracting new customers and moving into new markets. "We differentiate Dagenham's from other retailers by better understanding our customers' needs and aspirations. We sell a unique range of product categories and brands in an attractive shopping environment." During the last financial year, Debenhams has opened four new stores in Dundee, Reading, Weymouth and Banbury. Since the financial year end, two more stores have been opened in Sunderland and Milton Keynes. Three more stores will be opened over the next three months in Carlisle, Uxbridge and Oxford. As well as lingerie, where a new Janet Reger range is to be launched next year, Ms Earl has also identified health and beauty as growth areas. The store's own `MEA' range, launched in June, has become one of its top ten selling make-up brands and now Debenhams plans to launch more own-range health and beauty products.

SRI LANKA: Garment Factories Get Into REDI-to-Wear Company Press Release | 27 Sep 00

REDI-to-Wear, EDIasia's e-commerce product, has been installed E*Trade in three Sri Lankan garment factories. Hirdaramani Garments and Lux Shirts, are suppliers to the New York-based buying company Liz Claiborne Inc. Recognising that, unless it is handled properly any change to business processes can be painful, EDIasia's EDI support manager Jimmy Cheng worked with Nalaka Devendra and his team at E*Trade to ensure that the management and staff of the factories saw the introduction of EDI as a business bonus. Both Hirdaramani and Lux Shirts are initially using REDI-to-Wear to receive Liz Claiborne purchase orders at one of their factories. As Hirdaramani's merchandising manager said: "When the local Liz Claiborne office calls us up to ask how the packing is progressing I can use REDI-to-Wear to see exactly how many garments have been packed ready for loading. Before I have had to tell them that I would call back and then had to go and look myself. Now I can give them an accurate answer instantly." During the same week E*Trade also implemented EDI in one of the largest Sri Lankan suppliers to GAP Inc. In the medium term this company will use REDI-to-Wear to transparently link with the new ERP system that will control their production operations at various factories.

Inflatable bras an expanding market | 22 Sep 00

An unsinkable swimsuit and a blow-up bra were among the beachwear and lingerie innovations that made "inflatable" a buzz word at this Autumn's Lyon Mode City trade fair. The swimsuit, a one-piece available at the moment in children's sizes only, comes from the Plouf range by Greystone. The secret of how it keeps the wearer afloat lies in the construction of the fabric which employs a branded inflatable fibre called Eliotex. This traps air against the body, allowing the fabric - though little thicker than a normal suit - to act like water wings.

UK: Debenhams Appoints New CEO After Green's Departure | 14 Sep 00

UK department store, Debenhams, has a new woman at the helm - Belinda Earl, formerly the company's trading director. Terry Green has resigned as a director and chief executive of the chain to "pursue a new business opportunity". He said: "After nearly nine years as chief executive of Debenhams, I have taken the decision to resign to pursue a new challenge. "I am confident that the business is well set for continuing success under the leadership of Belinda Earl." Commenting on her appointment, Belinda Earl, who has been with the company since 1985, said: "This is a marvellous opportunity and I am delighted to have been asked to take it on. "We have a first-class team at Debenhams and I look forward to working with them to build on our powerful track record." Peter Jarvis, chairman of Debenhams said: "We have an excellent management team at Debenhams with considerable strength and depth. "Belinda has been a key member of the team for many years and her appointment is the natural next step for the business. "Debenhams is well poised to build on its leading market position and the successful strategy we have developed over recent years."There has been some speculation in the press about former CEO Terry Green's next venture. Some sources have linked him with Marks & Spencer, but the rumour has not been confirmed.

UK: The UK Retail Rankings 2000 Company Press Release | 14 Sep 00

Retail Intelligence's annual survey of the UK retail scene, The UK Retail Rankings, published today, shows 1999 was a record year for retail acquisitions in the UK, with the £6.7bn ASDA/Wal-Mart deal easily the largest ever in the sector. This pushed the total value of deals within the sector up to £8.6bn, an increase

UK: John Rocha To Create Collections For Debenhams | 31 Aug 00

Top British department store, Debenhams, is adding an exciting new name to its designer collection - John Rocha. The international designer has joined forces with the high street store to create five exclusive collections - womenswear, menswear, childrenswear, accessories, and home. It is believed to be the first time that so many collections have been launched simultaneously by one designer on the high street. The Rocha.John Rocha range will be available at 50 UK Debenhams stores from September, offering high shoppers the chance to buy the designer label. A spokesman from the company said: "Rocha's strong sense of individuality is evident throughout the collections, adding his unique mix of Celtic and Chinese influences. "Rocha.John Rocha offers directional pieces at amazing High Street prices." Versatility is the key to the womenswear collection designed for store, with the emphasis on luxurious fabrics and attention to detail. The menswear collection meanwhile is hard-hitting and directional, combining precision cut tailoring and casual wear. Functional detailing and hardwearing fabrics to create fun and wearable pieces form the basis of the childrenswear collection designed for boys and girls aged 3-8 years old . The essence of the Rocha.John Rocha homeware collection is comfort and style. The range reflects the clothing collections and offers contemporary lifestyle pieces from bedlinen and throws to tableware and accessories.

UK: Bhs Chief Takes Job At New Look Jane Mallin | 4 Aug 00

New Look Group, the specialist womenswear retailer, has appointed Philip Wrigley as managing director, operations for the board. He will take up his position at the end of September.Reporting to group chief executive, Stephen Sunnucks, Mr Wrigley will be responsible for all of New Look's retail operations, logistics, human resources and marketing. Mr Wrigley's appointment to the main board replaces thee xecutive position arising from Stephen's promotion to chief executive.With over eighteen years in retailing, Philip, aged 47, joins New Look from Bhs where, upon joining he was operations director, becoming its buying and merchandising director in November 1999 responsible for the trading strategy of the company. He joined Bhs from Dorothy Perkins where he was retail operations director with responsibility for all retail activity including store operations, visual merchandising and logistics. Between 1989 and 1993 he was finance director of Debenhams.Commenting on his appointment, Stephen Sunnucks, chief executive of New Look, said: "I am delighted to welcome Philip to New Look. He brings a wealth of fashion retailing expertise and knowledge to New Look."

E-commerce gets easier | 24 Jul 00

Using the Internet as a sales tool has become a way of life for an increasing number of companies, with everything from books, cars, banking and travel arrangements now established as online commodities. Apparel, though, has been slower off the mark. But all the signs suggest that this is changing and that clothing will soon have a major contribution to make to the digital economy.

UK: Debenhams To Carry Joe Boxer Underwear Line Jane Mallin | 21 Jul 00

JOE BOXER, the San Francisco-based underwear and sleepwear brand, is to launch in 53 Debenhams' outlets throughout the UK from 1 September 2000.Established in 1985, the company now sells apparel and accessories for women, men and children throughout the US in over 4,000 department stores, specialty shops and catalogs.The JOE BOXER product is manufactured under license both in the US and in Australia, Canada, Japan, Mexico and New Zealand. Licensed product includes boy's and girl's sleepwear and underwear, and boy's sportswear.

Sizing up the British market | 10 Jul 00

Leading UK high street retailers are redesigning all their women's clothing after a survey that found busts and waistlines are an inch bigger than a decade ago. With the average size dress now a 14, stores are also banning skinnier models from their advertisements and catwalk shows in favor of those with fuller figures.

USA: Charmed Technology Merges Fashion with Technology at New Beverly Hills Headquarters | 19 May 00

MIT Media Lab spin-off, Charmed Technology(TM), the leading developer of affordable, wearable, wireless Internet-connected devices, services, and technologies, today announced the relocation of their international corporate headquarters to Beverly Hills, Calif. The company's wireless mobile technology, which uses the NANIX(TM) operating system, will make it possible to access the World Wide Web anywhere, anytime, through smart miniature devices that can be carried or worn. These new products will include everyday objects such as eyeglasses, a necklace, lapel pin, or child's toy, and have recently been featured globally in the Charmed Technology Brave New Unwired World fashion shows in cities including New York, Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing, Tel Aviv and Los Angeles. "The success of the Brave New Unwired World show, as well as the research and development of our technologies, requires facilities that can better serve the needs of our fast-growing company," said Alex Lightman, co-founder and CEO of Charmed Technology(TM). Co-founder and Vice President of Events of Charmed Technology, Katrina Barillova, added: "Our new Beverly Hills location puts us in the heart of the global fashion industry and at the center of the digital coast expansion. We are now positioned at the intersection of two key industries for our business." Charmed Technology was previously located in Sherman Oaks, Calif. The company plans to open research centers in the Czech Republic, Silicon Valley, Calif., and London.

Verdict On Clothing Discounters 2000 Verdict Research Ltd | 10 May 00

British consumers have traditionally been significantly less price conscious than their equivalents in either Continental Europe or America. In years past discounters generally only thrived in the UK in times of recession. Now, however, it is all different, with clothing discounters' sales growth being lifestyle driven rather than recession driven as was the case in the past. So says the latest report from retail consultancy Verdict. Its consumer research shows that 15 per cent of ABC1s are shopping for clothes more at clothing discounters now than a year ago, and that 23 per cent of them are more likely to consider clothing shopping from supermarkets.

UK: Arcadia losses lead to 3,500 job cuts | 13 Apr 00

The shake-up on the British high street continues with the announcement by struggling retail group Arcadia that it is to sell its Principles for Men chain and cut 3,500 jobs after plunging into loss. Arcadia, the UK's second largest retailing group, today posted annual results that showed a pre-tax pre-exceptional loss of £8.6 million at the half-year stage compared with a profit of £26.3 million a year ago.The current price deflation across the UK's middle market is said to have contributed to the fall in Arcadia's revenues, whilst Principles for Men has also fallen victim to the rapidly growing trend towards dressed down casualwear. The chain currently trades through a total of 80 standalone shops and about 70 franchises in Arcadia outlets and Debenhams department stores. Principles' shops for women will remain open.

UK: Advert boost for Debenhams | 12 Apr 00

A £10m advertising campaign is producing benefits for sales at department store chain Debenhams, the group has said. Following the launch in October of its first TV commercials for 10 years, like-for-like sales, excluding new store space, are now running more than 1.8% above last year. Sales levels had been down 3.4% last autumn. "Initial customer feedback has been very encouraging", said finance director Matthew Roberts. Due to the lateness of Easter and the mid season sale, Debenhams declined to give exact like-for-like sales figures for the period since the half-year. However, Mr Roberts said the underlying growth trend was above the 1.8% figure seen in January and February. The group also reported that pre-tax profits fell to £73.8m in the six months to the end of February from £79.4m in the previous year. Mr Roberts said Debenhams was succeeding in a harsh market place. "We are doing well but the high street is having quite a tough time," he said. "I think things will remain competitive - we expect to see growth but pricing will continue to be important," he added. Debenhams shares rose 7.7% or 12p to 168p in early trading. Analysts said the performance was a good one in the current retail environment

3D Body Scanning - A fitting service Company Clothing | 25 Feb 00

Mission: to produce better fitting clothes; to exploit Internet shopping; to increase sales; to reduce returns; to automate measurement and pattern development of made-to-measure clothing . . . Much hype has been given to 3D body scanning, but how does the current situation stand, and what are its potential uses? Niki Tait visits a major researcher in the field - Professor Stephen Gray, head of Computer Clothing Research Ltd in Nottingham - to find out.

Playing to our strengths Company Clothing | 31 Aug 99

The sixth ASBCI Conference took apositive look at the way ahead for the British clothing industry Speaking at this year's ASBCI Conferencedinner, Mr David Jones, chief executive of Next Plc, reiterated his company's commitmentto the British clothing industry. "Next needs a strong manufacturing base, and willdo everything it can to help", he explained. "But manufacturers have to helpthemselves too".





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