The German group, which has invested more than €10 million in promoting its Tamaris brand all over Europe in the last few years, is getting more and more franchisees interested in adopting its recently launched store concept, which is generating on average double the turnover per square meter as the normal multi-brand stores that carry the brand.

By the end of 2007 a total of 35 free-standing Tamaris stores should be in place in various European countries, plus 60 shop-in-shops. The first 11 stores were opened last year in Europe, and 12 more will start up in the 1st half of 2007.

Meanwhile Wortmann has acquired a piece of land close to its head office and logistic center in Detmold to help sustain future growth, as the current premises have reached a saturation point. The investment will allow them to double to a total area of over 70,000 square meters, if necessary.

The growth is likely to slow down this year, however, due to a slow influx of orders for Winter 2007/08 deliveries of lined boots, due to the unseasonable warmth of the last few months. For the financial year ending next May 31, the company is predicting an overall sales increase of 9 percent to over €680 million, with a rise of more than 10 percent in terms of local currencies.

Sales in Eastern Europe and in other parts of the continent are developing strongly, leading to an anticipated increase of at least 15 percent outside Germany. Sales outside the home market should thus come to represent around 48 percent of the turnover, up from 46.1 percent in the previous year. Some of the progress is attributed to the launch of new technologies such as “antishokk” and “on air.” A new one is under preparation for introduction in the Spring/Summer 2008 season.

Including its Novi Footwear subsidiary in the Far East, Wortmann processes a total of more than 20 million pairs of shoes annually in the fashion segment and 40 million pairs in the basic segment. The staff has increased to 730 worldwide, including more than 400 employees stationed in Europe.