Reflecting its recent ‘one company, two brands’ strategy, Sarah Moughtin has extended her card buying remit beyond the John Lewis & Partners department stores to include Waitrose stores too.
“I am very excited by to take on this pan-partnership opportunity,” Sarah told PG Buzz. While Woodmansterne Publications is the retail group’s card category partner for its department stores, Hallmark Cards is the partner for Waitrose stores.
As Sarah reveals John Lewis & Partners has enjoyed a great start to the year on the card front. “We are feeling really positive. Valentine’s was right to the wire for John Lewis with the last two days seeing extraordinary growth. This meant we finished 9% up compared to last year, which we were delighted with. Everyday cards are holding strong and we are excited to see the impact of our replan which launches imminently.”
Praising the industry’s approach to product design while considering their environmental impact, she added: “It is great to see so many new ranges and innovative ways to make cards more sustainable but still capture customers’ attention. Thinking about glitter and high level of finishes is really front of mind when we are making buying decisions this year. For me the most important factor for any new publisher is to ensure they can play across many captions and categories and that they are able to go naked on packaging.”
When pressed on what newness has caught has caught her eye from publishers, Sarah acknowledges that “It feels like there is a lot of renewed energy and innovation from publishers.
Paper Sole caught my eye at Spring Fair and I especially liked the new National Trust ranges from Woodmansterne.
I am delighted to see so many new collections in work from our existing publishers which sets us up for an exciting year.”
Top: The card buying responsibility for Waitrose stores is now being covered by Sarah Moughtin.