BT2 more like Brown Thomas
IT WAS originally set up as a fashion store for a younger age set but 14 years after it was launched, BT2 is now evolving into a mini version of Brown Thomas.
It was a reflection of the impact of the economic downturn on the 17 to 25 age group, managing director Stephen Sealey told me when we met to discuss the company’s latest accounts.
“It’s been a work in progress for the past couple of years,” Sealey said. “You’ll see it in its clearest form in Dundrum .”
Why the change?
“The younger people just don’t have the money that they did and we know there’s a demand in Dundrum for some of the brands that we have . It’s a no-brainer really.
“The offer in Dundrum is tailored to the opportunity in Dundrum. There’s no top-end designer wear. It’s more contemporary and casual in lifestyle.”
Sealey said the change in format had led to a double-digit increase in sales at BT2.
Why not just rebrand the store as Brown Thomas and jettison the BT2 name?
“No. The Brown Thomas name carries with it certain expectations in terms of the scale and breadth of the offering and service. I don’t believe you can put the Brown Thomas name over the door of a small store.”
BT2 is about 16,000sq ft, making it much smaller than the Brown Thomas stores in Grafton Street, Cork, Galway and Limerick.
Brown Thomas currently operates BT2s in Grafton Street, Dundrum and Blanchardstown.
It will open a Mac at BT2 outlet on Henry Street in Dublin on November 15th.
“That’s very exciting for us,” Sealy added.
“We have a really strong partnership with the Lauder group and Mac is quite a large part of our beauty business.
“We had been looking at Henry Street for quite some time and we’ve managed to find a property now.”