White Stuff sharpens digital focus with bank support
British fashion and lifestyle brand White Stuff is to accelerate its shift to digital-driven retail as it grapples with the challenges posed by Covid-19, with the support of a Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) package from Lloyds Bank.
The London based retailer has secured the revolving credit facility with its long-standing banking partner via the government’s CLBIL Scheme.
The new funding will provide White Stuff with increased financial headroom to adapt to changing market conditions and consumer habits brought about by coronavirus. This includes accelerating plans to increase its digital capability in response to rising demand for its online services during the lockdown period.
White Stuff chief executive Jo Jenkins said: “For the last eighteen months we have been on a journey to transform our business into a more digitally driven brand and we have made good progress with the performance of our online channel. This channel shift has accelerated during Covid-19, with a substantial number of our existing customers showing loyalty to our brand by switching online, as well as a great number of new customers trying us for the first time.
“Whilst shops continue to play a critical role in our business, we need to face into the reality, particularly given the on-going uncertainty of when and how shops might perform given social distancing, that we need a leaner, more agile operating model that allows us to react to changing customer behaviour. This funding will help us do that.”
Marina Marecos, relationship director at Lloyds Bank, said: “Non-essential retailers have faced into a period of unprecedented challenge as lockdown paused high-street spending and made online the only route to market. Retailers up and down the country have responded, proactively shifting business models and accelerating change plans to help them survive and flourish in the post-Covid landscape.
“Much-loved brands like White Stuff are having to make tough choices to refocus and strengthen the areas of their business that will stimulate demand and best serve future growth. We’re proud to support the UK’s retailers, big and small, as they adjust to life after lockdown.”