As it builds momentum ahead of opening in 2023, the Grantham Designer Outlet Village has announced a suite of fashion and F&B brands that will take space in the premium outlet – alongside the news it will feature online sales platform Wishibam, a UK-first for outlet retail destinations.
Premium and lifestyle fashion brands Armani, Hugo Boss and Moss Bros have all agreed to take space in what will be the leading outlet retail destination in the East Midlands, alongside household F&B names including Starbucks and Five Guys. The Grantham Designer Outlet Village will offer a comprehensive visitor experience, ranging from its premium fashion brands, quality restaurants and coffee shops to events spaces, all in an attractive landscaped setting. This is set to make it a compelling attraction for shoppers from across its catchment that includes residents, students, workers and tourists in towns and cities across the region, including Cambridge, Nottingham, Leicester, Peterborough and Lincoln.
Tim Morris, Moss Bros, said: “The story of retail during the pandemic has been the story of the success and continued rise of not only online shopping but also that of designer outlets. With Moss Bros having shown remarkable resilience over the pandemic, we are now firmly focused on growth beyond recovery through the development of our casual ranges and improvements in our brand proposition. Therefore, opening new stores, and meeting new customers, at premium retail destinations like the Grantham Designer Outlet Village is at the heart of the next stage in our company’s future.”
Meanwhile, the Grantham Designer Outlet Village is set to be the first retail destination in the UK to partner with Wishibam, a Paris-based tech start-up. The partnership will provide an omnichannel retail store management system offering ship-from-store and click-and-collect services, which has already proven very successful in the number two ranked outlet village in France. The technology enhances the physical shopping experience, providing live updates to shoppers on what is available in participating stores and helping to drive footfall and increase sales.
In partnership with local, family-owned trust Buckminster, the Grantham Designer Outlet Village is being developed by Rioja Estates, the outlet retail specialists behind some of the UK and Europe’s most successful designer outlets, including the McArthurGlen Designer Outlet West Midlands – which, just months after opening, has become one of the European outlet giant’s best performing destinations. Since August 2021, Rioja Estates has seen a surge in increase in interest among brands in premium fashion, outdoors, sports, and F&B in taking space in the Grantham Designer Outlet Village.
Giles Membrey, managing director of Rioja Estates, said: “In the past few months alone, we have seen interest from brands more than double, reflecting the post pandemic success of outlets generally and the exceptional opportunities this best-in-class destination will offer for brands, as well as for the 4.5 million people living within a 90-minute drive and those from farther afield. Added to that, our partnership with Wishibam, which will extend the shopping experience to our customers’ living rooms, and our focus on our environmental credentials, the Grantham Designer Outlet Village will be at the forefront of the trends shaping retail, offering excellent business opportunities for brands when it opens, and far into the future.”
Environmental sustainability is at the core of the Grantham Designer Outlet Village’s plans, from the use of environmentally conscious materials, to multiple electric car charging points. The prestigious BREEAM “Very Good” accreditation has already been awarded. As a town centre landlord, Buckminster is both commercially and morally invested in creating a better future for residents and businesses in Grantham, and places a high importance on environmental issues, a sentiment shared by Rioja Estates.
The Grantham Designer Outlet Village will also be socially sustainable, with 10% of the projected 3.5 million people visiting the designer outlet a year also expected to visit Grantham town centre and its retailers and restaurants as well as other nearby tourist attractions. Local artisans and businesses will also benefit from free advertising and marketing opportunities provided by the village, including pop-up spaces. The development will also bring £100 million direct investment into the area and create up to 1,500 permanent jobs when it opens.
The 270,000 sq ft development will feature up to 90 stores, restaurants and coffee shops in Phase One, with up to 50 more stores proposed for Phase Two.