Luxury British Polo Brand geared for growth in the UK and abroad
Luxury British sport and lifestyle brand, Hurlingham Polo, launched by ex-Reebok VP, Simon Hawkins, is set to unveil a new creative direction for AW20 that includes men’s, women’s and gender-neutral ranges to help drive the brand deeper into the UK market and beyond.
Developed by new Design Director, Bardhyl Latifi, whose has previously worked with designer powerhouses such as Burberry and Hugo Boss, as well as Napapijri, Henri Lloyd and Vans, the collection is his first for the polo-inspired brand and marks a strong step forward for the clothing label from the sport’s most international and prestigious governing body, the Hurlingham Polo Association (HPA).
The brand’s 150-year heritage, which dates back to the very foundations of the sport of polo, gives it a right to win in a competitive marketplace, says CEO, Simon Hawkins.
He comments: “We are gearing up to challenge the legacy polo brands who have adopted the sport and done incredibly well from it. But Hurlingham Polo is the original and we are offering a real authentic connection to the sport – we have complete integrity. No-one has a better right to represent the sport.
“We are using bold design talent, superior fabrics and glorious attention to detail to strike a chord with the consumer who demands quality and authenticity from the brands they choose. It’s about more than the game of polo – it’s about the inherent style associated to it that is revered the world over. We are interpreting the polo-chic look to represent a ‘New British’ style that draws inspiration from a British sporting institution that has international appeal.
“With consumers redefining luxury, we are clear on the brand direction; appealing to an increasingly demanding customer means keeping current, yet maintaining integrity. As we develop our coming clothing collections, we are using our brand’s history to create authentic pieces which speak to the new luxe shopper.”
Developing a strong understanding of their consumer has been central to the brand’s development since their soft launch in 2017, when they entered the market with a small menswear collection of monogrammed sporting basics, classic tailoring and performance off-field training gear.
“We have invested heavily in the brand over the last three years, building the foundations for growth,” says Hawkins. “We have trade marked the brand globally, recruited an experienced team and created strong product collections in order to quickly establish a footprint in the UK, on-line as well as via strategic retail accounts and stand-alone retail stores. This approach provides the brand visibility necessary for international growth on a global scale, namely in the USA and Canada, the Middle East and the Far East.
“Our mission is to work with world class retailers across many product categories, including fashion, lifestyle and accessories, food and beverage, which all express the character and values of the Game of Kings with which we are so entrenched.”
International growth is a key strategic objective for the lifestyle brand, who predicts that more than 50 per cent of their sales will be from foreign markets within five years, where the international appeal of both the game of polo and the sartorial style of the British consumer is high.
“Although our origins as a lifestyle brand come from the game of polo, we do go beyond the field of play and we are also inspired and influenced by our British heritage, which has an absolutely international appeal,” says Hawkins.
With international ambitions and an omnichannel approach to its customer and marketing strategies, the brand is creating solid foundations for its future success, where bricks and mortar stores are an important part of that mix.
Hawkins comments: “Whilst a lot of retailers are focussing purely on their digital growth and online presence, for Hurlingham Polo, stores are an important part of our offer, both in domestic markets and abroad. They create a brand experience for consumers to immerse themselves in our world, to truly understand the heritage and authenticity behind the brand, as well as touch and feel the quality of the products we design.
“We are looking forward to bringing the brand to a larger audience across multiple touchpoints. With our consumer at the heart of what we do, we know we are bringing them something that is unique and authentic – a lifestyle brand with integrity at its heart that is stylish and modern, yet still with British heritage at its core. Quality and detail are visible in every piece of the collection; immaculate craftsmanship, fine tailoring and a clear sense of taste and style will always be at the heart of everything we do.”