Kate Moss will lead China charge: Topshop’s Philip Green
The head of the company that owns Topshop has told CNBC that the new Kate Moss collection was his opportunity to enter the Chinese retail market.
Topshop announced in early October that the famous model would launch a new collection with the fashion chain from April 2014, three years after her last set of designs hit the stores.
CNBC Meets' Tania Bryer asked Green whether Moss' collection could form a first foothold in the Chinese market.
"I'm going to give it a go, to open China with this collection," he said. "I had a meeting with somebody from there and we're going to give it a shot, see if we can do it. Then the plan will be, if we do, that we'll open London and we'll fly the same night to China and we'll open China."
The collection will go on sale in 40 countries and marks part of the increasing international expansion of Green's retail chains under the Arcadia brand.
Green will open stores in Australia, Vietnam and Canada under the Topshop, Topman, Dorothy Perkins, Miss Selfridge and Burton brands. Richard Storer, Topshop's global head of PR, told CNBC, "These are the hoped for plans of the company, however I am sure things will switch and change as we go along the expansion."
Topshop will also see its own store in New Zealand, and the brand is expected to increase its presence in the U.S. Nordstrom department store from 14 to 42 shops. Topshop already has flagship stores in New York, Chicago, Las Vegas and Los Angeles.
Commenting on how the most recent collaboration came about, Green emphasized the friendship that was forged between himself and Moss at the last collection.
"I think Kate and I have remained friends. We became great friends when we worked together," he said.
"We actually holidayed in the summer and she was looking at two or three other things and it's about three and a half years now since she worked with us. We're still great friends and she was talking to me about some brand. I can't remember the name of it now...And I had someone have a look at it and I said, 'Kate, it's the wrong place for you.'"
Green told Bryer that he then offered to work with Moss once more, "I said, 'Well let's to something again together, if you want. If that's what you want to do.'
I said, 'Let's do it. But let's not have anyone else involved, just you and me.' I said, 'Wednesday week come around to my apartment. Here's a piece of paper, here's the deal. Do you want to do it?'"
Green's Arcadia, which also owns the Topman, Burton, Dorothy Perkins, Miss Selfridge, Wallis and Evans brands, is the largest privately owned clothing retailer in the U.K. with more than 2,500 stores.
The full program - CNBC Meets: Sir Philip Green - will air on Wednesday 13 November.