And now time for bizness news, kids. Everyone’s favourite high street stop-off for a tailored trew or a statement necklace is selling its stake in sister (or should that be ex-wife) company to try and bring the rest of the brand back into profitability. The chief executive of French Connection is Stephen Marks, who was at at one point, Mr Nicole Farhi – which is where the company got its name, fact-fans (Stephen is British, Nicole is French, she was ‘the French connection’).
Gosh, and mon dieu! Because here at Grazia the consensus is that Nicole Farhi is rather hot to trot en ce moment, so it’s a real shame that the company is to be sold off. Stephen Marks had this to say on the subject;
“I am confident that the changes we have made will create a solid base for the development of the business and will enable the group to return to profitability in the near future”
We hope the French Connection boss is right, because we’ve also been loving the new brand ethos – fabulous franglais ads starring our favourite bearded wonder of the season (who IS that man?), great looks (we’ve been particularly taken by the rainbow striped graphic knitwear we’ve spotted in there of late) and, well, we love a bit of FC– and their pieces do last for years.
Looking at the figures on the BBC website it seems like the company is doing well on several fronts, but being sooo huge to start with and having so many stores globally (the least profitable ones in the USA will be shut as part of the changes) means it takes a while to see the results from any turn-around in planning. It seems that one problem area was sales of menswear. . . surely when everyone has seen the rugged new poster boy, this situation will change toute de suite!
- Naomi Attwood