Case Study: Derek Rose - Business growth and manufacturing support
Accessed expert support and funding from Made Smarter
Luxury clothing brand and family-owned business, Derek Rose has been in operation since 1926 and has grown to become a thriving, international business, with two flagship London stores – one in Notting Hill and one Knightsbridge.
The firm's manufacturing base is located in Congleton, where its premium range of sleep and lounge wear is produced. The Cheshire manufacturing hub launched in 1975 and helped to propel the company from strength to strength as it built an international wholesale business, working with the finest stores and boutiques in over 45 countries around the world.
Over two thirds of Derek Rose sales are now made outside the UK and the company has steadily evolved. Derek Rose clothing is designed with a function first philosophy, putting customer needs at the heart of the design process. Having the right technology in place to ensure the very best, fit-for-purpose clothing is produced for the Derek Rose label is vital.
That's why, in 2021, the business approached Cheshire and Warrington Growth Hub for assistance in acquiring new leading-edge equipment. Working with the Growth Hub, Derek Rose was introduced to the Made Smarter Programme. Created to help manufacturing SMEs realise their digitalisation ambitions and overcome operational challenges through digital technologies, Made Smarter was able to support Derek Rose with advice and grant funding
Working with the experts from the Made Smarter team, Derek Rose completed a Digital Transformation Workshop session which is designed to help identify opportunities and make recommendations for technology solutions through a Digital Roadmap report.
As a result, the company sourced and purchased a fabric cutting machine and associated software, with partial grant funding from Made Smarter. This technology would automate fabric cutting processes for the silk studio and would be used to further the growth of the firm's silk studio, as this had been something that had been outsourced previously.
Commenting on her experience with Made Smarter and how it has promoted the expansion of the Derek Rose line, Laura says, "with the addition of the cutting machine we will be able to greatly increase the accuracy of our cutting processes which will in turn make our production processes simpler and more efficient, therefore increasing the potential for higher productivity."