After facing a brief plummet in sales during the mid-2000s, handbag brand Radley is ready to make its move on Asia.
The brand, which was founded in 1998 by Lowell Harder, has seen a 9 percent increase in British sales this year. Radley’s chief executive, Xavier Simonet, is confident that the brand is on a comeback, and that it can market its purses to Asian consumers as well reports The Telegraph.
“A big part of the strategy is international growth. The next step, as well as UK growth, is to expand internationally,” he said.
Part of Radley’s recently developed confidence is due to revamped designs and a new aesthetic. With Harder serving as the brand’s creative consultant, Radley has released new prints and non-leather options, though their signature Scottish terrier logo remains.
Radley’s owners, private equity houses Exponent and Phoenix, are putting a lot of faith into the brand and are covering the company’s existing debts (£20 million) in order to move forward with plans for expansion.
Along with opening new locations in the UK, Radley is looking to expand to Asia, Australia and the Middle East, opening a combined ten stores by 2015. Right now, they are working on opening one in Taipei, Taiwan, this month.
Simonet is hoping that Radley’s purses and accessories will appeal to Asian consumers who love luxury items, but are looking to stick to a more modest budget. The brand’s purses go for an average of £80 to £350.
“What is new is the importance of affordable luxury. It is a balance between beauty and functionality,” he said.
However, the affordable luxury market is starting to get crowded in China, especially with American designers aggressively wooing the Chinese.
image credit: radley