Nursery and childrenswear retailer Mamas & Papas has confirmed plans to open further concessions with Next after reporting strong footfall and sales at its newly launched sites since lockdown restrictions were eased in April.
Mamas & Papas will open a 2,000 sq ft dedicated space in Next’s store at Brent Cross Shopping Park on 17th May followed by a similar sized location in its store at Milton Keynes Central Retail Park on 30th July, taking its total to nine.
Mamas & Papas opened its first Next concession in November 2018 at Bristol’s Cribbs Causeway. Since then, it has launched at locations including Sheffield’s Meadowhall and Manchester’s Arndale last year.
As well as stocking its ranges of travel systems, nursery furniture and children’s clothing, the concessions also provide in-store experiences such as personal shopping appointments, car seat consultations and fittings as well as click & collect. The sites typically measure between 2,000 sq ft and 3,500 sq ft.
Nathan Williams, Chief Operating Officer at Mamas & Papas, said: “Our partnership with Next has performed exceptionally well for both parties, giving customers even more reasons to shop at Next whilst bringing our brand and award-winning ranges to more new and expectant parents.
“Physical retail space remains an important pillar of our multi-channel growth strategy alongside our online business. Feedback from our customers shows they value the opportunity to touch and feel our products and the consultative experience that our specialist assistants provide in-store.
“We’re excited to be expanding our partnership and plan to develop the relationship further over the coming year.”
Commenting on current trading, the business said the performance of its standalone store estate had surpassed expectations in the four weeks since non-essential retail re-opened whilst its online business had delivered consistantly strong sales growth throughout the pandemic. Earlier this year, the retailer re-platformed its website to Shopify Plus, which it said was already contributing positively to growth.
Recent maternity statistics compiled by the NHS show the number of antenatal booking appointments during the fourth quarter of 2020 was at its highest level for five years.