Since its foundation in 2014, the German watch label Kapten & Son quickly grew into a must have brand. Mainly pushed over Instagram, the brand became more and more popular each season. Most recently the brand ran a pop-up store in Cologne where the latest cooperation with influencer Farina was also presented. Here, Tonio Kantorski, chief sales officer explains why it was about time to go offline with a temporary store and more about the expansion plans.

brand's iconic watches, pop-up store in Cologne
© Kapten & Son
brand's iconic watches, pop-up store in Cologne

Kapton & Son recently opened its first pop-up store in Germany for two weeks. Why was it about time to go from online to offline?

We come from the online sector and started wholesaling just two years ago. By now we’re active with our e-commerce and trade partners in Europe, USA, Australia and Asia. With the pop-up store we wanted to present Kapten & Son to the world, make the brand fully perceptible and interact with our end customers. In addition, our recent cooperation with influencer Farina, with whom we designed sunglasses, was a good reason for it. The sunglasses add to our collection we launched last year. Farina lives in Cologne, where we coincidentally found the ideal location for our pop-up store at the border of the popular Belgian quarter.

 

pup-up store in Cologne
© Kapten & Son
pup-up store in Cologne

What was especially important to you about the store design?

We’re a young brand which should be reflected by the store design. Furniture-wise, robust elements like display tables made from euro pallets and un-plastered brick walls meet clean white surfaces and open walls to present our entire product range from watches to sunglasses. All of our products are accessible, nothing is locked behind glass so the customers can take the products into their hands, experience them and try them on. In addition, digital elements are very important for our store design, we have a touchscreen as well as a small photo booth integrated, which customers can use to directly share their favorite styles in social networks.

 

What are the plans regarding retail in Germany and internationally?

Via our subsidiary in Australia we maintain a permanent store in Melbourne, on the roof of the headquarters based there, but we don’t have any plans on opening own stores in Germany or Europe at the moment. Nevertheless we don’t exclude opening further pop-up stores, as soon as the possibility or the right location pops up. Our focus is still on e-commerce and wholesale. Via that we want to grow internationally.



touchscreen, pop-up store in Cologne
© Kapten & Son
touchscreen, pop-up store in Cologne

What are the core markets of Kapten & Son at the moment? And in which markets and segments lies the highest growth potential?

Our strongest markets are German-speaking countries at the moment. But we’re also very successful in France where we recently launched. In Europe, we currently serve 500 points of sale, 250 of them only in Germany. Additionally, we see big potential in markets like UK, Scandinavia and Spain, which we want to enter within the next 6 months.



How do you want to generate further growth?

We want to grow in our core markets via new sales partners. At the moment the distribution looks like this: 70% fashion concept stores and 30% specialized retailers. We especially see big potential in opticians and jewelers. These offer the opportunity to also strengthen our presence in smaller cities. Also, we want to generate growth through the internationalization, e-commerce and wholesale.

 

sunglasses at the pop-up store in Cologne
© Kapten & Son
sunglasses at the pop-up store in Cologne

Last year you launched sunglasses. Are there further plans for new product categories?

Currently, there are no concrete plans. But we continuously work on product innovations and just recently launched new watch models in cheaper entry level prizes as well as the first line which is not unisex. In addition, we constantly update our product range with new colors and materials.

 

newly launched women styles at the pop-up store in Cologne
© Kapten & Son
newly launched women styles at the pop-up store in Cologne

 

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