Sports Direct to open 50,000 sq ft Manchester flagship
Frasers Group has big plans for Sports Direct in Manchester and has signed a new site in the city for the brand’s third UK flagship. Opening in late 2022, it will occupy a 50,000 sq ft space and the company said it “will be the pinnacle of Sports Direct’s retail offering”.
That’s a bold claim, but there’s no denying that Frasers has the resources and the will to make it happen. The company has been investing heavily in its physical spaces in recent periods, from department stores to new flagship Flannels locations. It’s been one of — if not the — most active UK companies as far as opening physical stores is concerned of late.
The new Sports Direct store will be in Manchester city centre in The Arndale shopping centre, and as well as the core brand, it will house other brands owned by the firm, including USC, Evans Cycles and Game, plus a Belong esports arena.
Spread across five floors, it will have a heavy focus on global labels, as well as sections dedicated to specialist disciplines, including running, football, and outdoor pursuits. USC will offer trend-focused consumers a selection of the season’s premium branded denim, urban fashion, accessories, and footwear from brands including Converse, CP Company, Hugo Boss and Lacoste.
Frasers has previously opened flagships for Sports Direct on London’s Oxford Street and in Birmingham.
It said that it has signed a 15-year lease for the new Manchester site and that this “further demonstrates its commitment to physical retail and bringing elevated retail destinations to consumers — securing its foothold as the leading destination for sport and lifestyle”.
The group’s property chief, James France, said: “Our ambitious plans for Sports Direct Manchester, mark a pivotal moment for the group as we continue to expand and invest into our store portfolio and flagship presence. This store will be one of our most advanced to date and will bring to life the Sports Direct brand in a physical space, enabling consumers to engage in an innovative shopping experience first-hand.”
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