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Aussie retailer Institchu opens showroom in NYC

Australian online retailer InStitchu has quietly opened a showroom in New York City, while continuing its offline push into Australia with the announcement of a new showroom in Canberra today.

The menswear brand offers made-to-measure suits through its e-commerce website and operates six showrooms in major cities in Australia, New Zealand and the US, where customers can touch and feel the fabric and get expert fittings.

The showroom in New York, InStitchu’s first in the US, has been open since early December 2016, Internet Retailing has learnt. According to Real Estate Weekly, InStitchu signed a five-year lease on a 120sqm space in Manhattan’s  Flatiron district.

Heading up the company’s US push is Noni Balian, general and operations manager at InStitchu US, who has worked for the retailer since 2014, according to LinkedIn.

Although InStitchu has marketed the showroom through online channels locally, the company has yet to officially announce its American expansion.

InStitchu declined to comment about its international expansion at this time.

Speaking about the showroom opening in Canberra, InStitchu co-founder James Wakefield said additional showrooms help to scale the business.

“Our research shows that once fitted in a showroom, the majority of customers will be happy to conduct all future orders online,” he said.

More broadly Wakefield sees a big opportunity to cater to male customers, who recent research suggests are underserved by fashion brands, despite the fact they are bigger online shoppers than women.

“There is a huge potential for growth in the bespoke product market. Modern consumers’ needs are changing. They are becoming more style-conscious and conforming less to societal norms. InStitchu is here to provide, appreciating the shopper who prioritises a skillfully crafted product with a perfect fit over slavish devotion to trend,” Wakefield said.

Co-founder Robin McGowan says there are several reasons the company is expanding its offline footprint, with the opening of a showroom in Canberra: “The significant corporate and political workforce in Canberra made it the obvious next step for InStitchu.

“The wedding industry in Canberra is drastically under-serviced. With so many people prepared to make the trip to our Sydney showroom, we felt that it was time for the businessmen and politicians to have their own local showroom, reclaiming their professional style with a convenient and affordable option for tailored suits.

“We can’t wait for Canberrans to experience our unique combination of old-world charm and innovative technology,” he said.

(The showroom pictured is in Canberra.)

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