Are pupils outperforming their school sports kit? If so, Stevensons are currently working with over 250 schools and sports clubs to ensure their sportswear meets the needs of the athlete.
Stevensons is a family-run company and was first founded in 1925 as Victoire Modes. It grew to become a department store, before turning into a pure school uniform company in the late ’80s. Stevensons saw an opportunity to offer schools a better service and high-quality product to set them apart from their competition.
They then turned their attention to sportswear and launched the XXV brand five years ago. Stevensons assures schools that their kit will equip pupils with what they need to break boundaries and set new records, a promise which is very enticing for competitive UK schools.
“There has been a sportswear revolution because schools want to have an identity on the sports field,” explained Mark Stevenson, Managing Director at Stevensons. “Due to competitions, sportswear is what other schools see rather than the uniform, so it’s very important to schools. We are retailing more sportswear than schoolwear and that has been a big change over the last 10 years.”
Consequently, Stevensons have embraced this growth and created a product that schools are proud to be seen in on the sports field.
“Schools are now seeing us as a brand and wanting to use our branding on the exterior of the product,” continued Mark. “In the beginning, we created a subtler brand but now we are getting pressure from the schools to be more vocal about the brand. We are regularly against big brands tendering sports kits, but schools recognise the benefits of coming with us.”
After the success of XXV, Stevensons are now excited about 2018 as they plan to expand and develop their stock range. They currently supply sports kits for a range of sports, including football, rugby, netball, cricket, hockey and lacrosse, but also want to focus on an extensive stock range.
The benefit of a family business is that we can adjust our business accordingly and make sure we are continually improving the customer experience
“At the moment, our entire brand is made to order,” explained Mark. “So, we sit down with the school, design the kits and then get them manufactured. But going forward we are looking at creating a stock range and a few core products, for example, elite tracksuits and performance mid-layers. This will create a more extensive stock range to supplement our bespoke range.”
This stock will also have ‘quality without compromise’ as it continues to be made with the latest performance fabrics. The secret to Stevensons success is that their sportswear doesn’t just look smart, it is smart. For example, the sportswear is breathable, wind resistant, water repellent and quick drying, a combination which means pupils aren’t held back by old fashioned fabrics.
It seems that Stevensons have created the perfect sportswear solution with XXV, but they refuse to become complacent as they continue to evolve with the needs of schools today.
“The benefit of a family business is that we can adjust our business accordingly and make sure we are continually improving the customer experience,” concluded Mark. “We believe we can react a lot quicker and when we get feedback from customers we can adapt to suit their needs.”
So, what will sportswear from Stevensons look like in another five years? Watch this space…