Billabong Europe expands its network
Over the next five years, Billabong is planning on opening thirty new stores. The priority will go to the group's eponymous board sports brand, which will see 21 new retail points. RVCA and Element will respectively get 2 and 7 more stores.
In full global restructuring mode, which notably included the closing of less profitable stores, Billabong is thus looking to reformulate its retail network.
In Europe, for its 2014-2015 financial year, the group should generate 77% of its revenue at its 3,000 authorised sellers'.
A very diverse network, ranging from sport specialists to more fashion-oriented stores, which will be "a specifically European feature," according to Jean-Louis Rodrigues, the brand's managing director of Europe.
And although Germany is still Billabong's priority market, France is not far off. "France is a priority market. We are currently looking for locations in Lyon, Lille, Nantes and Strasbourg. Paris is also part of the plan, but as the next step," stated Jean-Louis Rodrigues.
Moreover, in the weeks to come, Billabong will be making its debut at the Galeries Lafayette Haussmann with its Active women's line. Jean-Louis Rodrigues pointed out: "In Spain, we have 53 concessions of this type at the Corte Inglès that are working very well."
Another growth lever, e-commerce. The group, which recently repatriated its sites internally, is now aiming at an omnichannel. In Europe, it will shortly be putting a click & collect service in place with its entire network of authorised sellers.
For its 2014-2015 financial year, Billabong should generate 125 million euros in revenue in Europe, and maybe even slightly more. A return to profitability is even envisioned for the continent.
The group also highlights that for spring-summer 2015, Billanbong's European orders went up 3%, 14% for Element and even jumped 41% for RVCA.
The entire Billabong group is currently working on a project for a centralised warehouse in Asia which will make it possible to consolidate the production on a single platform.
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