- Sector: Retail
- Region: North West
- Revenue: £75m to £100m
- Website: www.ralawise.com
Adapt and innovate
Ralawise’s story is one of transition. From a kitchen-based T-shirt printing business in the family home in the 1980s, to a traditional wholesale clothing distributor, it is now Europe’s fastest-growing online B2B clothing, homewares and accessories distributor.
Its website, Ralawise.com, boasts five million items in stock and now offers a portfolio of over 110 brands and 3,700 styles from sports and workwear to mainstream fashion. Jeff and Jon Batson, joint Managing Directors, say that with such an unrivalled inventory, they can offer fast and flexible service to customers across the UK and the rest of Europe.
“Be willing to adapt your business to suit your customer, not the other way round”
“One of the biggest opportunities for growth has been an increased demand for personalised or decorated products,” says Jeff. “Our customers want a more varied and innovative range of products and the expectation for a quick turnaround is more prevalent than ever.” But that means getting the right systems and partnerships in place. “Our success is partly due to excellent supply chain relationships that have been forged with our leading international supply partners and global brands. But we’ve also had to be flexible enough to respond to change.”
During the harsh economic times of the late 2010s, the company focused on technology to maximize efficiencies.
5m – The number of items of stock on Ralawise.com
“We recognised the growth of customers trading online, so a particular emphasis has been on the Ralawise.com web platform allowing for more effective global customer acquisition,” says Jeff.
Jon says he would advise any new business to listen to its customers above all else: “Be willing to change and adapt your business to suit your customer, not the other way round.