Hunkemöller to close stores in Benelux and Germany

Facade of lingerie shop from Hunkemoller
Photo: AL Robinson /

Hunkemöller plans to close stores in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. As a result of the corona crisis, the lingerie chain is reviewing its expansion plans, but also the existing network: in mature markets it will have to operate with fewer stores.


Growth plans scrapped

Only last year Hunkemöller was planning a worldwide expansion to 1400 stores, but now we hear a completely different sound: the lingerie chain will "probably" stick to the current number of 950 stores. That's what CEO Philip Mountford said at a RetailTrends event.

This doesn't mean that the retailer doesn't want to open new shops. On the contrary, the chain already has a few concrete growth markets in mind, including Russia. What it does mean, therefore, is that in more saturated markets, particularly the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, stores will close. The number of closures envisaged by Hunkemöller is not known by Mountford. He does, however, say that he will concentrate on the most profitable shops, which appear to be located mainly in smaller towns and locations.


Towards 250 million euros online

In addition, the chain wants to speed up its e-commerce and omni-channel strategy, as online sales have amounted to 180 million euros since the corona crisis. Over the next three years, that figure should approach 250 million euros, with more attention also being paid to mobile and social media as sales channels.

Hunkemöller found itself in dire financial straits as a result of the corona crisis. In a recent analysis, Deloitte even doubted whether the chain could survive given the current accounting situation, and the consultancy issued a continuity warning. The lingerie group then announced that it was having 'positive' talks with the banks about better financing conditions.