The luxury lingerie brand, along with Dana-co, an intimates apparel importer and marketing company and the holder of Natori brand lingerie licensee, has signed a deal to begin wholesale distribution of lingerie and innerwear in the U.K. and Europe.
“This is just the beginning in terms of building the infrastructure internationally,” Josie Natori, founder, chief executive officer and chief creative officer of Natori, told WWD. “It takes investment, organization and infrastructure, particularly in the innerwear and foundations fields.”
Natori added that there are plans to move the brand to other parts of the world as well at a later date, although nothing has been finalized.
“Asia is the obvious choice,” she said. “But for now, our agreements are for Europe. And we have amazing partners in Dana-co. We’re going to go one step at a time.”
Natori also said it was too early to give a date for the arrival of Natori products in stores on the other side of the pond, but said the goal is for spring 2022.
Dana-co has appointed Denise Shepherd, an alum of Escada and lingerie brand Panache, as the director of international sales to lead the expansion. She will be based in London.
“I am so very excited at this opportunity to join the passionate team at Dana-co,” Shepherd said. “I’m looking forward to launching Natori and Skarlett Blue [Dana-co’s in-house brand] into international markets and for women across the world to experience the innovative design and dedication to comfort that both brands offer, which have been essential to both Natori and Skarlett Blue’s success in the American market.”
While natori.com ships all over the world, and sleepwear is currently available at select third-party retailers in the U.K. and Europe, this will be the first time lingerie and innerwear will be available wholesale. Natori is also available Stateside at Nordstrom, Dillard’s, Bloomingdale’s, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and specialty stores.
Like many of its competitors in the innerwear world, Natori said basics and sleepwear were popular amid the pandemic. The founder said sales surged at natori.com during lockdown.
“Our approach has always been innerwear as outerwear,” Natori said. “During the pandemic that increased in multiples. We definitely benefited from the comfort trend.
“But that’s starting to shift,” she continued. “The world is opening up again; people are going out. They want to be sexy, wear statement pieces. There’s different bras and underwear you wear with different dresses. I’m not saying comfort is dead. People have discovered they want to be comfortable 24/7. But you can be comfortable and still be glamorous.”