The brand favoured by Beyoncé, the actor Selena Gomez and the model Kylie Jenner increased total sales by 9% to £252.5m in its last financial year, driven by a 7.4% rise in the UK, almost none of which was down to new store openings. The UK performance comes despite widespread difficulties experienced by many British fashion brands after a warm autumn and winter last year.
William Kim, the chief executive of AllSaints, said sales in the UK were up after it introduced bags for the first time and expanded its range of knitwear as well as coats and jackets, particularly in leather.
Kim said: “We don’t comment on the weather at our regular meetings. Our obsession is on the customers and the brand experience.” He said AllSaints had developed its own technology to ensure it had the right product in stores at the right time and could make all items in its stores available to shoppers online as well. Online sales both via its website and third party sites rose 33% to £47.3m, accounting for almost a fifth of its total sales.
Overseas, AllSaints achieved strong growth in the US and Canada. It is in discussions to open more department store concessions in north America as well as in east Asia, where it recently moved into Japan.
“A number of American brands have struggled in Europe and vice versa but we have a strong foothold across the Atlantic,” Kim said.
He said AllSaints had begun selling its clothing via department store websites including Selfridges, John Lewis and in the US Bloomingdales in the past year and was now in talks with a number other third party sites to help with overseas expansion.
Kim said a move into China was on the horizon and the company was also looking at other Asian markets beyond South Korea, Taiwan and Japan where it already operates.
“Last year we moved from 11 countries to 18 and by 2020 we should be trading in 30 to 35,” he said.
Kim would not give details on planned store openings but he said last year the company opened 23, and so far this year had opened about 50.
He said: “We have a healthy pipeline of concessions, stand-alone stores, pop-ups, outlets, wholesale opportunities which we evaluate and prioritise accordingly.”