Alfred Dunhill hunts shop for digital expansion plan

Alfred Dunhill, the under-performing luxury goods brand, is reviewing its digital agencies ahead of an expansion of its online activities later this year.

The company has recently appointed an e-commerce manager, Gavin Alexander, and is planning to expand its e-commerce site, which currently only delivers to the US, UK and eight other European countries. More countries are likely to be added later in the year, and the company is expected to announce the results of its digital agency review in the near future.

The review follows an overhaul of the company’s senior team this year. Chief executive Simon Critchell left at the end of March, and was replaced by Christopher Colfer. Colfer was previously involved in the marketing of several smaller brands in the Richemont Group – the owner of Dunhill – including fashion label Chloé and gun maker Purdey. Dunhill marketing director Paddy Byng also left at the end of 2005.

Richemont is one of the world’s largest luxury goods groups, which also owns Cartier, Shanghai Tang and Montblanc. Dunhill’s decision to expand its online operations highlights the growing acceptance of the Web as a way to reach consumers, particularly for luxury brands with a small retail presence.

Dunhill’s current site was developed by Paris-based agency Avence, but is maintained in house by Richemont Internet.

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