Introduction

Dr. Martens is focused on delivering sustainable and profitable growth to drive long-term value for the brand and its shareholders.

The management team believe in being brand custodians, focused on protecting and enhancing the brand and the business for future generations.

The business aims to deliver its growth plan by continuing to execute its tried and tested DOCS strategy.

Our purpose is to empower rebellious self-expression

Our responsibility is to act as brand custodians

Our aim is to deliver long-term value for the business

This is where Dr. Martens is heading. This is what we’re working towards together

Control our own destiny

Focus areas

Fuel e-commerce growth

Dr. Martens has scaled its e-commerce channel quickly and it remains our priority growth area. In FY18, Dr. Martens began implementing an online strategy with a number of initiatives put in place including: (i) a replatform of e-commerce sites in EMEA and Americas, as well as South Korea and Japan; (ii) an upgrade of the foundation of sites in key geographies such as the UK and mainland Europe in order to deliver a more localised, user-friendly experience; (iii) the launch of an online channel in China via Tmall; and (iv) an improvement in the use of data analytics tools to generate more robust insights. We have a clear and well-prioritised roadmap for growth in e-commerce. Dr. Martens will also continue its investments in digital marketing to fuel the growth of e-commerce. The business’ digital marketing is resonating with consumers and will continue to attract and engage consumers through stories that feature the brand and products.

Drive retail growth

Dr. Martens’ e-commerce platform is complemented by the retail channel, comprising 130 stores as at 30 September 2020 primarily located in key cities globally. The retail channel contributed 25% of revenue in FY20, up from 19% in FY15. The business seeks to continue to drive growth in its stores through several initiatives such as staff training, stock availability, and labour scheduling. The business has seen productivity improvements after the implementation of StoreForce and the Friedman methodology in the US where conversion increased from high single digits to mid-teens. We are currently rolling out these tools in Europe, where we are already seeing similar improvement in performance as in the US and will aim to roll out these tools in Asia in the near future.

Retail is an economically attractive channel with stores acting as profitable brand beacons and as a driver for e-commerce growth as new stores increase brand awareness. Dr. Martens also plans to drive sustainable expansion of its retail footprint with the addition of new, profitable, retail locations globally. Dr. Martens takes a rigorous, cautious and highly data-driven approach when scouting for and opening retail locations.

Unlock value and enable growth

Focus areas

Build a best-in-class integrated supply chain

Dr. Martens continues to professionalise and invest in its operational infrastructure to unlock value and enable growth. The business is implementing a supply chain cost reduction programme. We have the scale to produce enough pairs to support the near-term trajectory and aim to build out enough capacity to support over 20 million pairs, two times the number of pairs produced today, by FY25.

Transform IT into a key business enabler

Dr. Martens continues to invest in the business’ IT systems to support better forecasting and management of bigger, more complex supply chain, and has created plans for developing a stronger infrastructure and technology backbone through the acquisition and use of several technologies beyond the current systems the business has today.

Build meaningful relationships with consumers

Focus areas

Create deeper connections with more consumers

Dr. Martens is focused on creating deeper connections with more consumers, using consumer insights to develop effective marketing strategies aimed at increasing engagement with consumers and broadening the business’ consumer base. A particular emphasis has been placed on improving understanding of consumer segments to help engage in a more meaningful, tailored two-way conversation, focusing initially on digital and social channels, and also continuing to broaden the consumer base whilst retaining the brand’s differentiating attributes. Alongside this, the consumer experience on social media has been improved through the implementation of an upgraded social listening tool, enabling Dr. Martens to better capture consumer sentiment across these channels, and supporting more thorough and timely responses to queries and comments.

Continue to sharpen our product strategy

In managing the balance between timeless styles and alternative trends, the business’ product strategy has centred around the “Icons”, while expanding the product line through true-to-brand variations and categories. Accordingly, as part of the transformation programme that began in 2014, the business significantly reduced its style count, on the back of a portfolio rationalisation programme and a more stringent product development process, including a focus on core products. To account for country-specific consumer tastes and market needs, the businesses' Regional Brand teams create seasonal assortments from the global collection that strategically target consumers across different channels.

Accelerate our sustainability journey

Dr. Martens has developed an overarching sustainability strategy and targets which led to an extensive programme of actions based on five pillars: (1) Design Responsibly, investing in research and innovation to adopt the mindset of circularity in the product development process; (2) Produce Responsibly, driving environmental initiatives in the supply chain; (3) Sell Responsibly, driving sustainability through design and procurement in retail; (4) Treat People Responsibly, committing to fair and decent working conditions throughout the business’ supply chain and owned operations; and (5) Do More for our Communities, supporting causes which drive forward positive change and empower rebellious self-expression. Our sustainability strategy is overseen by a sustainability committee chaired by the CEO.

Grow our business in the right way

Focus areas

Prioritise resource towards key global markets

Dr. Martens believes that it has a significant opportunity for growth within the £341 billion global footwear market. The business benefits from strong brand awareness globally, which provides significant basis for growth. Dr. Martens is focused on sustainable growth, applying our tried and tested DOCS strategy in every market, with resource prioritised towards key markets.

Grow quality wholesale

In more established markets such as the UK, the US, France and Germany, the business is focused on continuing to drive direct-to-consumer led growth, in particular e-commerce, whilst maintaining continued high quality growth of its wholesale business, including developing collaborations with premier wholesale partners, known as Amp Accounts, such as Dover Street Market and END, to build consumer awareness and brand equity.

In certain markets, such as Eastern Europe and Spain/Portugal, Dr. Martens is currently operated by distributors. In recent years, the business has successfully converted certain of its key markets in Europe, including Germany and the Baltics/Nordics, from a distributor to an owned-and-operated subsidiary basis. In Germany, since Dr. Martens took back control of the market, the Group has been able to control and drive growth, by broadening assortment, opening 8 new stores, reducing wholesale accounts to 240 and doubling the product range breadth. The business will continue moving forward with this market conversion strategy in certain markets where we believe it will be beneficial for long-term growth. In FY22, our distributor in Italy will transfer the wholesale distribution for the Italian market to Dr. Martens. Management is also planning on converting Spain and Portugal to a wholesale market model in FY22.

In China the business operates through a physical distributor and through an online channel. The business’ physical distribution is carried out through one distribution partner that operates franchise stores in China. In October 2017, Dr. Martens launched an e-commerce offering in China on the Tmall platform, the country’s largest third party e-commerce marketplace. Dr. Martens’ performance to date has been very strong, with e-commerce seeing significant growth in FY20. In addition, in 2019, Dr. Martens was the best-selling brand on 11/11 on Tmall’s platform. We believe there is significant potential and opportunity to grow Dr. Martens’ channels in China. Growth in China will primarily be driven by e-commerce and supported by franchise door expansion.

Build organisational culture and capability

Empowering rebellious self-expression. Cultivating an environment where we can all be our best.

Project focus areas: Diversity and inclusion, onboarding and Employee Value Proposition

Enhancing our employer brand and bringing the right people into our business

Project focus areas: Assessment methodology and entry-level talent attraction and development

Building opportunities and skills for our people to learn and grow

Project focus areas: Performance development and new managers

Bringing structure and clarity to the way we compensate and value our people

Project focus areas: Recognition and reward frameworks

Driving operational excellence and compliance across teams, systems and processes

Project focus areas: HRIS implementation and Employee Experience Platform