NEW YORK — Marvin Traub Associates, the business development firm that works with the fashion, retail and consumer goods industries, has launched Traub Europe.
Based in London at 1 Lumley Street in Mayfair, Traub Europe will be headed by industry veterans Nigel French, chairman, and Stephen Pomfret, chief executive officer.
Mortimer Singer, ceo of Marvin Traub Associates, said the London-based division’s goal is to offer clients a centrally located global hub that provides guidance in expanding their businesses in both mature and emerging markets. He noted that French and Pomfret bring years of expertise in such areas as private-label development, merchandising and brand development.
Earlier, French headed Global Partners International Ltd., a company that provided trend forecasting services in the apparel and home categories, brand design and product development, licensing and franchising services. It also assisted brands and retailers that wanted to expand internationally. He previously served as chairman of May Department Stores International, where he spearheaded a global sourcing initiative, built a design team to develop private labels and restructured the company’s import program.
Pomfret’s background is in strategic business development, including international, multichannel retailing, brand development and product development. He held senior and board positions at Marks & Spencer, Mothercare and Uniqlo.
French, who was reached in London, told WWD, “We’re hoping to extend our reach, in terms of geographic and product reach. Morty has divisions we didn’t have, like food and beverage, and we have divisions they didn’t have, like designing private-label brands.” He said one of the projects they’ll be working on is with German department store Karstadt and ceo Andrew Jennings to bring exclusive international brands to the chain. He wants to help international brands move from one country to another.
“There are a lot of retailers and brands who want to do it, but are nervous about it or don’t know how to go about it. They can’t decide if it should be a franchise, a license or a joint venture, or if they should do it on their own,” said French. “We feel that the majority of people we’re talking to have brands that travel. We get people who call up and want to go into America. We have to explain that America has been a graveyard for a lot of European retailers. It’s not a consideration to be taken lightly,” said French.
Singer added that what they’ll do — in both New York and London — is implement strategies that a company’s board or outside advisers have recommended. “In many cases, the management has trouble or doesn’t know how to execute on those recommendations. So we often joke that we start where the PowerPoint stops. We put in place the strategies and execute on them.”