TRADITIONAL brand leader in France for children’s underwear, Petit Bateau concluded an agreement with Fung Retailing, a subsidiary of Li & Fung, that will launch the product range in China. Although the company also markets outerwear, the Chinese launch will concern initially only its children’s underwear range. The objective is to open over 100 stores under the brand’s label and the first outlets in major Chinese cities are to open in 2015. In 2013, Petit Bateau generated sales of EUR 300m, with exports accounting for 45 per cent of the total. Its expansion into China will allow the proportion of exports to exceed 50 per cent and will bring to over 300 the number of Petit Bateau retail stores worldwide.
The local dominance of the Petit Bateau brand was solidly established before supermarkets arrived on the French scene and the company has held on to much of its former popularity.