“Our research of the ‘British Heritage Market’ had clearly shown the Japanese customer to be a highly discerning British heritage style connoisseur”
Mamun Chowdhury, joint founder and managing director of London Tradition
Only founded in 2001, London Tradition has quickly established a reputation for designing and making top-quality unlined garments for the wholesale market, including stylish pea coats, duffles and trench coats.
That reputation has grown around the world, with Japan one of the first overseas markets the Hackney-based company ventured into. And the founders insist that their garments are, have always been and will continue to be designed and manufactured in London.
The company’s achievements have also recently been recognised by the British government with the award of the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise 2014.
“The award is a recognition of excellence for this rapidly expanding company that has taken British outerwear – including the humble duffle coat – and transformed them into a luxury heritage brand for an international market,” the citation reads, pointing out that the company has recorded an impressive rate of growth of 865% over a period of six years.
Today, Japan is the company’s biggest overseas market – accounting for fully 50 percent of exports – followed by Germany, Italy, France, Austria, Holland and Spain, while London Tradition also has its eyes on the United States and South America.
“Our research of the ‘British Heritage Market’ had clearly shown the Japanese customer to be a highly discerning British heritage style connoisseur,” said Mamun Chowdhury, the joint founder and managing director of the company. “So our entry into the Japanese market from early 2003 was a natural fit for our products.”
“We consider the Japanese market to be highly influential in the world and thus has significant potential, both for our existing trade and wholesale market as well as for our planned entry into the retail market,” said fellow managing director Rob Huson.
London Tradition is presently undertaking extensive market research into both the wholesale and retail sectors in Japan and the company intends to draw up a targeted growth plan.
The UK Trade & Investment team at the embassy have been instrumental in assisting London Tradition to get a foot in the door of what is a competitive and fast-moving sector. “We consider the British Embassy in Japan to be a vital partner in all our endeavours in Japan and feel that it would have taken us much longer and indeed been riskier to try to access that market without their assistance,” said Chowdhury.
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