SHANGHAI — Ted Baker, which has doubled its number of stores in China from two to four in the past month, is hoping Chinese consumers will hop on the affordable luxury bandwagon.
Since opening its first China store in Beijing a little over 12 months ago, Ted Baker has wasted no time following up with two stores in Shanghai and a concession in Beijing’s newly opened Galeries Lafayette department store. The British company, which got its start as a men’s shirt specialist in Glasgow 25 years ago, plans to eventually roll out 10 stores across tier-one, and perhaps some tier-two, cities.
Ted Baker’s delayed entry into China was in part a product of what founder and chief executive officer Ray Kelvin calls the company’s “pragmatic” approach to expansion, but also because it took quite a while to find good locations in shopping malls willing to take a chance on a brand little known in this market.
“China hasn’t really grabbed hold of this luxury, contemporary, affordable market that we’re in. They only know about luxury. That’s another world, so we struggled to get the right locations,” Kelvin said in an interview at the brand’s newest Shanghai location, in a newly opened Kerry Centre mall on the city’s premier shopping street, Nanjing Road.
“Once the market figures out what we’re all about, I think we’ll do extremely well.” Kelvin said Chinese consumers shopping elsewhere in the world, particularly at the brand’s London, San Francisco and Hong Kong stores, have embraced the brand, and he’s expecting the same in Mainland China.
Kelvin said he is happy with the performance of the China stores to date but declined to elaborate on financials as the company is currently in a blackout period. “We are doing better than we thought we’d do. Beijing is doing quite nicely actually,” he said.
Kelvin is adamant that the company won’t be tweaking its brand, product or corporate culture to be successful in China.
“If you cater to everybody, you are going to dilute what you do; it’s one of the issues with the big [luxury] groups around the world that try to take everybody on. They’ve lost their own identity. We know what we are,” Kelvin said. “If we can replicate what we’ve done elsewhere in the world in China, then I believe we’ll be very successful.”
Ted Baker now has more than 340 stores and concessions worldwide. Sales in the six months ended Aug. 31 rose 31 percent to 155.2 million pounds, or $246.54 million at current exchange.
My character, Dinah Madani, is just the coolest, [most] badass woman imaginable," says @amberroserevah. The actress stars in @marvel's newest series on @netflix, @thepunisher. To prepare for her role, Revah sat down with Homeland agents to get a real sense of with Dinah's day-to-day life is really like. Read our full interview on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
A scene from the 91st annual @macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade, which boasts 50 million TV viewers and 3.5 million on-site spectators, is considered one of the largest and most watched parades in the world. (📷: Jason Szenes/EPA-REX)
The circus came to @bloomingdales 59th Street on Tuesday night and lit up Lexington Avenue with acrobatic dancers, death-defying knife throwing, sword swallowing and aerial acts with no net. The 45 minutes of theatrics built up to unveiling the holiday windows depicting @swarovski crystal-encrusted circus pieces and scenes from “The Greatest Showman” – songs from the soundtrack included. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Joshua Scott)
The psychedelic fashion that pervaded the ’60s is back with an exhibit at the @museumofcityny. “Mode New York: Fashion Takes a Trip” chronicles the changing styles from 1960 through 1973 and features designers such as @ysl, @oscardelarenta and more. The exhibition, which is on display through April 1, is organized into four periods: First Lady Fasion, Youthquake, New Bohemia and New Nonchalance. Pictured here is model Pat Bardonella during the Garvey Day Parade in 1968. (📷: @kwamebphoto) #wwdeye #wwdfashion
“People should be a lot more honest in expressing both the dark and light of themselves. We need to give each other the space to do that because it’s the only way we can grow and evolve,” says @noelwells of her new film “Mr. Roosevelt,” which is largely based on her own struggles. Unexpectedly leaving @nbcsnl in 2014 after just one season, Wells felt set back in her self-esteem and career trajectory. She quickly refocused her energy to more personal projects, which led to the completion of “Mr. Roosevelt.” Read the rest of WWD’s interview with the “Master of None” actress on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
@barbrastreisand is giving fans a chance to see her perform up close in a new concert series, which makes its debut on @Netflix today. From behind-the-scenes takes to her concert performance in Miami last December, the two-hour streaming special captures Streisand in her element. Pictured here is the singer/actress photographed for WWD in 1963. (📷: Palmieri Tony) #wwdeye #wwdarchive
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)