A vintage football shirts retailer has moved to new headquarters to accommodate its growth, with sales on track to rise by 25 per cent this year and staff numbers increasing.
Classic Football Shirts, which was founded in 2006 by student pals Matthew Dale and Doug Bierton in their final year at the University of Manchester, has invested £4.5m in a new warehouse and offices in Hyde, Tameside.
The company, which has 87 employees and expects its workforce to increase to around 100 this year, was previously based on Edwin Road near the Etihad Campus in Manchester.
The company’s new base spans 70,000 sq ft and is more than twice the size of its former HQ.
Turnover this year is on track to grow from £12m to £15m.
Co-founder Matthew said demand is increasing due to the boom in online shopping as well as the rise in home working, as people dress more casually.
Arsenal fan Matthew and Manchester United supporter Doug, both 35, were in the final year of their management degree course when they combined their passion for football and business to set up their venture.
Matthew comments: “At the time, lots of people were selling football shirts but not really on a professional basis. We decided to go for it, thinking we had nothing to lose.
“We bought as many shirts as we could with our credit cards and things took off from there.”
As well as British and European club shirts, the retailer sells kits from teams in countries further afield, including Ghana, Indonesia and Zimbabwe.
Matthew continues: “People love collecting rare and vintage shirts. They buy them to wear themselves and as gifts for friends and family. They are often buying a piece of football history.
“Sales have been growing as online shopping has increased and as more and more people work from home and therefore feel they don’t have to wear a suit.
“We are thrilled to be up and running in our new larger premises. The move means we are well-prepared for continued future growth and we are delighted to welcome our new members of staff to help us meet increasing demand for our shirts.”
Following its move and due to its growth, Classic Football Shirts has appointed accounting and business advisory firm HURST to provide assurance services.
HURST’s team, led by business services partner Anthony Woodings, is providing audit services utilising its market-leading digital approach.