For Lin and Maxine Windram, bra shopping is always a frustrating and ultimately disappointing experience.
According to the 2009 data of underwear suppliers, it is estimated that 40% of Australian women wear women whose size is DD or higher, their mother and daughter, but they find that many retailers only carry one or two styles, if any, In their size. Maxine recalled having to wear a “grandma bra” when she was a teenager because it was the only person who suited her.
“I remember coming out of my first bra fit experience and felt that I was a problem. My body was very unusual, because only one of all the bras in the department store was right for me,” Maxine told IRW.
“At that time, the bra can only be used for DD. You find an E-cup from time to time, which is considered to be a very large size.”
After enduring a bra that was unfit or unsightly for many years, Lin and Maxine asked themselves one day, if we could get into the store and find the right things, what we liked and what we were interested in?
The answer is Brava Lingerie, their professional retail business that began in 2006, which is dedicated to women who wear D cups and above.
Here, Lin and Maxine talk about how they plan to nearly double their store network in the next five years and how they can avoid the discount trap.
Inside Retail Weekly: Can you tell us a snapshot of the Brava Lingerie business today? How many stores and employees do you have, what is your annual sales?
Lin Windram: We opened our sixth store in Camberwell, Victoria last week. The rest are in Victoria, except for the Sydney family that we opened more than a year ago. We have about 40 employees across the enterprise – all women – in marketing, buying and e-commerce.
Maxine Windram: We are a bit reluctant to share our annual sales, but we can say that our retail stores grow by 5% to 20% per year, depending on the store and at what stage. Our current online sales account for approximately 20% of total revenue and are still growing. We are always asked to open more stores, and we plan to open a new store every year for the next five years, so we certainly have a growth plan that meets our needs.