Rodd & Gunn opens in New York

mikeroddandgunn_dfd_0029, 409Rodd & Gunn is opening its first US showroom in New York’s Trunk Club on Madison Ave.

The Auckland-based company will have a retail space within the 26,000sqft Trunk Club, a men’s online personal styling service selling highend clothing that has several brick and mortar showrooms throughout the US.

The move follows two years of solid growth in the US, with the opening of an office in San Francisco in 2014.

Mike Beagley, Rodd & Gunn MD, said that the US is a stepping stone to other top markets, and while the most competitive market, it is the best place to be if the goal is to expand beyond New Zealand and Australia.

“We’ve been looking to enter other markets like the Middle East and the first thing every potential partner asks is if we’re in the US, and how we’re doing there.”

Rodd & Gun’s strategy to date has been to sell through wholesale in order to build a customer base, rather than setting up its own stores.

Australia was Rodd & Gunn’s first international market, with sales there now accounting for 70 per cent of the company’s $80 million annual turnover.

Beagley said that the Mansion on Madison is an ideal site for Rodd & Gunn.

“New York sets the bar in retail trends and it’s pretty exciting to be welcomed into that scene.”

Jason Smith, Trunk Club VP merchandising, said that Rodd & Gunn is one of the club’s most popular labels following its launch in the US two years ago.

“The quality of the materials, the overall styling aesthetic of the brand and the fit of the garments is superb. It’s a premium brand with premium styling, while also completely accessible from a price standpoint.

“I’d liken it to what Ralph Lauren or even Billy Reid represents here in the US. It embodies this idea of ‘updated traditional’ that performs really well for our members,” he said.

Beagley said that American has a completely different retail environment to other markets.

“Coming from New Zealand is novel, but it’s not a winning proposition in itself. It’s good to have a quirky edge from far off country, and our range fits the American sensibility, but we have to prove we’re sticking around, keep a strong focus on quality, and deliver on time, at the right price.”

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