The Laden Showroom launches £1m Crowdcube pitch

Founded in 1999 by Barry Laden,The Laden Showroom provides retail space for 65 small independent designers, filling the gap between design talent and the commercial retail business of selling designers’ products. For the last 15 years the store has offered mentoring and guidance to its designers, whose products are sold at the 1600 sq ft Brick Lane premises.

Described by Time Out Magazine as ‘a font of experimental design’, it’s widely considered London leading independent store to promote small-scale and independent fashion designers and the store was a finalist in the London Evening Standard O2 Inspiration Award for Business in 2007. The Laden Showroom has dressed celebrities from Pixie Lott and The Saturdays to Victoria Beckham and Dannii Minogue and founder Barry Laden was awarded the MBE for services to the fashion industry in the 2011 New Year’s Honours List. Having one successful store in London, known both nationally and internationally, is the perfect springboard for scaling up the business to become a national and international brand.

A handful of selectively chosen locations will form the core of the business in the UK before expansion begins overseas; three new stores will be added to the Brick Lane flagship within the first year, along with the first store in China at the end of year one. During year one plans will be laid to expand further into Asia, specifically China and Japan, into Europe – starting with Germany – and into the USA. By the end of year three The Laden Showroom expects to have 22-24 stores with a valuation of about £30m and by the end of year five the company anticipates a valuation of £100m with a likely IPO boosting further expansion.The choice of international locations has been driven not just by selecting successful world economies, but also where The Laden Showroom’s exposure already exists in those markets.

Founded and funded through original investment by Barry Laden and bank loans only,The Laden Showroom now has no debt.The sum of £1,000,000 is now being sought through Crowdcube in exchange for 16.67 per cent of the business, though there is hope to overfund to a maximum of £2,000,000 in exchange for 33 per cent of the business.This maximum overfund would help to create one further store in the UK, an additional store in China and three new stores in a new trading region, Scandinavia.

Investors will be offered A shares with full voting and pre-emption rights, along with being entitled to rewards including discount cards and invitations to exclusive store openings.