Having previously been owned and operated by Sanei International, the entire store, online and wholesale business will be transferred to a wholly-owned subsidiary – Cath Kidston Japan.The deal comes as sales in the Asian nation hit in excess of £23m, meaning it is now the biggest market for Cath Kidston outside of the UK. Home, childrensware and bags have reportedly driven growth in the last four years, with the business having first established itself in Japan in 2006. Sanei International had owned the franchise operation since 2011. Cath Kidston began life as a single unit in London’s Holland Park in 1993, set up by the entrepreneur who put her name to the business. Since then, it has expanded into 16 countries, with its first Middle East location opening in Saudi Arabia in January 2015. Speaking to Real Business back in 2009, Kidston revealed the decision to name the business after herself was done so that old clients, from her time working in a vintage curtain business, could find her in the phone book. Explaining how the initial product line came along, she said: “I was planning to make wallpaper and furnishing fabrics with a sideline vintage shop. “So I ordered lot of fabric from eastern Europe. It was meant to come by the yard, but as they also had a bedlinen factory, I asked the company if they would make some of the fabric into kids duvets. There was a misunderstanding and when the fabric arrived, it was all children’s duvets and pillow cases. To salvage stock I started making stock aprons and tea towels.” Read more about Cath Kidston:
- Cath Kidston up for sale
- Meet the 1,000 companies inspiring Britain in 2015
- What can UK SMEs learn from the second Japanese business generation?
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