A HUSBAND and wife team who created a global childrenswear business have launched an expansion drive with new jobs and a shop extension, which means they now own half the street where the business is based.

Designer Childrenswear, owned by Brenda and Kevin Coade was set up over 30 years ago after a short spell selling clothes on market stalls.

Today the business sells international designer and High Street brands for children from babies up to 16 years, around the world.

To cope with the hugely expanding order book they have bought additional properties around their current retail base on Olive Street, Sunderland, so their shop, warehouse and head office are all under one roof.

Mrs Coade said: “We are one of only a handful of independent children retailers left in the country and I think our growth has come as a result of that fact. We can be nimble and respond to trends as well as giving great customer service.

“Being under lockdown is not great for any retailer but we’ve invested a substantial amount in our new website and are really getting the benefit of being on-line right from the early days of web sales, about 15 years ago.

“We sell our clothes to customers across the world including China, the Middle East, America and Europe. As part of our ambitions to really push our on-line sales we are currently looking at creating roles for team members who speak foreign languages as well.”

A member of North East England Chamber of Commerce, Mrs Coade has spoken at the Chamber Inspiring Females conference to encourage the next generation of entrepreneurs.

Julie Charlton, chamber relationship manager said: “Designer Childrenswear is a really inspirational success story for our region.

“They have created a business that creates long-term secure jobs and is at the cutting edge of childrenswear retailing. We wish them all the very best of luck with their expansion and trailblazing plans.”

Designer Childrenswear, which employs 44 people, has won multiple awards including the prestigious Drapers Awards in 2018 and 2019 for Best Independent Childrenswear Multichannel retailer.

It also has a star-studded list of celebrity customers including Paris Fury, wife of Tyson Fury.

Further information is available on www.designerchildrenswear.com