Shoe retailer Clarks to open portfolio of stores in Turkey

Shoe retailer Clarks to open portfolio of stores in Turkey

Increasing numbers of British retailers are choosing to examine their options overseas, with emerging markets in Asia and the improving economic circumstances in the USA and the Eurozone contributing to this boom in international opportunities. Shoe retailer Clarks is the latest to reveal an intention to expand its overseas store portfolio, with plans in place to open its first two Turkish stores in Istanbul this year.
shoe-retailer-clarks-to-open-portfolio-of-stores-in-turkey Date Added : 22 May 2014 Thursday


Both of the Turkish stores will be located in new retail developments in which British retailers play a prominent role. Clarks hopes that this will provide a major inroad to the potentially lucrative Turkish market and, should all go to plan, wishes to open a total of 25 stores in the country over the next four years.
The first store will be established in the Mall of Istanbul, a sprawling 155,000 square metre development which is one of Turkey’s largest retail projects of recent years. It is due to open this Friday, and has already secured brands such as Debenhams, H&M and Victoria’s Secret alongside Clarks’ 150 square metre unit.
A Clarks store will also be one of the major features of the 40,000 square metre Ozdilek Park, which will open in Istanbul’s central business district in September. In total, the retail park will provide units for 145 different brands, and owners have already secured tenants such as Mango and H&M to take up places in the vicinity of Clarks’ 155 square metre outlet.
Clarks will be supported in this ambitious venture by the Istanbul branch of Cushman and Wakefield’s retail team, with the local knowledge and awareness of current market trends a strong asset for any brand looking to enter a new market. Managing partner of the Istanbul retail team, Togrul Gonden, is optimistic about the quintessentially British brand’s future in Turkey.
He says; “We anticipate Clarks will benefit from extremely high levels of footfall, and not just initially – these new schemes are expected to see significant year round visitor volumes.”
Presumably, Clarks will carry over its intention to adapt to modern technologies as a means of improving the customer experience in Turkey. The brand is currently in the process of implementing a new system in its UK stores, whereby it will measure children’s feet using iPads to speed up the process and increase turnover as a result.
Clarks is certainly in a good position to increase its store portfolio on an international scale, having posted a record turnover of £1.4 billion in the last financial year. Operating profits remained relatively low, at £115.8 million, however this could rise significantly with a higher turnover of the kind available on the overseas platform.
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