Tuesday, October 8, 2013

News: Blue Inc pick Rotherham for first retail park store

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Young fashion chain, Blue Inc, has chosen Parkgate Shopping in Rotherham to launch its first UK shopping park store.

The rapidly expanding retailer, offering ladies and men's high street fashion, is taking 10,512 sq ft over two floors at the popular park.

Trading since 1912 and originating from London's East End, Blue Inc has pushed on through the economic downturn, snapping up High Street stores from struggling retailers including D2, Officer's Club and republic in recent years to grow to over 200 stores.

Steven Cohen acquired the company in 2006 and investors including former boss of Marks & Spencer, Sir Stuart Rose and The Reuben Brothers have backed the company over the past two years to support its ongoing growth. Profits were an estimated £3.8m in 2012.

The Rotherham store is the company's first in a retail park location and follows from international expansion through franchises in countries including Malaysia, Estonia and Latvia.

It is estimated that Blue Inc now has a workforce numbering over 2,500, with over 85% aged in the 16-29 year old youth "high unemployment" bracket.

Owned by Hercules Unit Trust, which is advised by British Land and managed by Schroders, Parkgate Shopping is one of the largest retail parks in the UK, home to over 40 shops and attracting around seven million visitors a year.

The 11,286 sq ft unit lease for a Nike Factory Store has also been confirmed.

Matt Reed, senior asset manager for British Land, said: "We are continuing to actively develop our shopping park portfolio and evolve the retail mix across our parks. Nike and Blue Inc are welcome additions to Parkgate Shopping and complement the existing provision. This is Nike's second store with HUT and we are delighted to strengthen our relationship with another worldwide recognised brand."

British Land was represented by Wilkinson Williams, Morgan Williams and Harvey Spack Field. CBRE acted for Nike and Harvey Spack Field acted for Blue Inc.

Blue Inc website
Parkgate Shopping website

Images: Blue Inc

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