LONDON — A mix of fresh bricks-and-mortar space and online retail bolstered annual sales at Selfridges & Co. 16 percent to 1.6 billion pounds in the 12 months ended January 28, 2017. The privately held Selfridges said operating profit climbed 18 percent to 180 million pounds year-over-year.
Paul Kelly, managing director of Selfridges Group, said the results came from the “success of our long-term planning and implementation of an ambitious program of capital expenditure across all channels and stores.” The results will be posted on Companies House, the official register of U.K. businesses, within the next week.
The store said that more than 200 million pounds of additional sales were generated in 2016-17 from the e-commerce site, which outstripped expectations, from newly refurbished spaces at the Birmingham and Manchester stores and from the bigger London store.
The results refer to Selfridges stores only, and not to the group’s other retailers Brown Thomas in Ireland, Holt Renfrew in Canada and de Bijenkorf in the Netherlands.
As reported, Selfridges is three years into a 300-million-pounds capital expenditure program, which has seen investment in the e-commerce site and the opening of phase one of its new accessories hall, with the second phase set to open at the end of November.
The full project, designed and overseen by David Chipperfield, will be completed in summer 2018, and Selfridges said the refurbished, expanded halls will become the largest destination for luxury accessories in the world, spanning 60,000 square feet, and taking up one-third of Selfridges’ ground floor space.
The merchandise — chiefly handbags and small leather goods for men and women — will eventually generate 45 percent of the store’s overall accessories sales. (Shoes are located upstairs, while watches and jewelry are sold in the ground floor Wonder Room).
Over the past two years, the has also introduced the Body Studio, which taps into the ath-leisure trend, and the Designer Studio, which focuses on items rather than brands. By 2018, Chipperfield will have redone the entire facade on Duke Street, creating a triple-height entrance into the accessories hall.
Anne Pitcher, Selfridges’ managing director, said the store saw growth across all product categories as well as increased traffic to selfridges.com. Growth also came from “offering customers extraordinary experiences and destinations” and said the store is poised to deliver increased sales in 2017.
The store has always put a big focus on short-term installations and experiences, collaborating with the likes of Erdem, Fashion East and scores of other London talents. Earlier this month it teamed with A$AP Rocky to open a New York-style bodega for 10 days. They packed it with Rocky’s favorite things, ranging from Krispy Kremes and Twinkies to Twelvyy T-shirts and sweatshirts. At one point A$AP even manned the cash register.
“The Bodega was Rocky’s idea from the start,” said the store’s men’s wear director Bosse Myhr.
“We like Rocky and his creative approach across different mediums. Having developed a relationship with him over the past few years, it was like friends coming together to make a great concept work. We will continue to present collabs and special projects, but at Selfridges we do not do the same thing twice. We are thrilled to explore new ways of working and to find collaborators we can support and grow with.”