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Office sales rise 26% over Christmas

Office, the fashion footwear retailer, saw like-for-like sales growth of 26% in the five weeks to 31 December compared to 19.4% in the same period in 2010.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Office sales rise 26% over Christmas

In a statement issued today, the company also announced the appointment of former Asda chief executive Allan Leighton as non-executive chairman. This is the second board appointment the company has made in recent months, the first being Ian Findlay as finance director last September. Previously Findlay was finance director at the Jane Norman fashion chain.

CEO Brian McCluskey said: "The business has been performing strongly all year, with 12 month like-for-like growth in excess of 15% (PY comparative 11.4%). During 2011 we have opened 8 stores and 8 concessions and all have traded significantly ahead of expectations. This is a very credible performance particularly in the current environment and is testament to the incredible team of people we have here at OFFICE and the fantastic brands and suppliers we work with."

The company, which is owned by Silverfleet Capital, plans to open six to eight stores in the next 12 months and will continue to expand and invest in its online business.

Founded in 1981, Office has 84 stand-alone stores in the UK and Ireland and 52 concessions in House of Fraser, Topshop, Topman, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges.

Allan Leighton said: "Office has built a great brand, known by anyone looking for fashionable shoes, because it understands the customer desires and needs.  There is still significant opportunity for further growth and Ian and I are looking forward to helping Brian and his team build the business further."

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