As rumours continue to fly regarding Tom Ford’s return to Gucci following Frida Giannini’s recent departure, the designer is not making secret of the fact that he wishes to grow his namesake brand worldwide.
With plans to open stores in 46 freestanding locations as well as in 58 shops-in-shop by the end of the year, the popular brand, worth $1 billion, is set for global domination of the luxury market. March will see new boutiques opening in Dubai and Jeddah, whilst Houston, Miami and Atlanta are also on the list to receive the Tom Ford treatment in autumn. And it’s clear that Ford has strategy on his mind—his expansion also comes with the news that some of his Chinese stores are set to close to allow for a better-executed expansion. “We are currently re-negotiating the contracts. A few of the stores were not as great as they should be. When we first entered Asia, we didn’t have the power that we do now,” explained Ford to WWD.
One of the most interesting expansions is set to take place in London—undoubtedly an unrivalled platform for luxury brands. Up until now, the designer has called the lower ground floor of department store Harrods his home, but as of the end of February, the brand will relocate to the ground floor. While it might seem like a tiny adjustment, the move will allow Tom Ford 500 sq.ft of extra space that will be utilised to showcase his denim collection and more casual lines. “Tom is putting a lot of energy into making the business ever more modern, and he’s pushing the boundaries on his casual offer. We felt he needed greater exposure,” said Jason Broderick, fashion director of menswear, sports and watches at Harrods. “It’s great news for us.”
Meanwhile, reps continue to deny the rumours that Ford is set to return to Gucci, commenting that “his own brand is growing dramatically and he views that as the next 30 years of his life.” And with such expansions in the pipeline, we are certainly set to see a lot more of Tom Ford’s eponymous offerings in the near future.