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MP visits Hotter HQ to meet staff and hear how digital-first approach is set to underpin future growth

Hotter Shoes, one of the UK’s largest footwear brands, welcomed Rosie Cooper MP on Friday (October 8th), who toured the premises to meet staff and hear how the firm’s digital transformation is underpinning its future.

Rosie Cooper, MP for West Lancashire, visited the firm’s Skelmersdale HQ. She met Hotter CEO Ian Watson and discussed the firm’s largest ever staff training programme, its investment in agile processes and multi-million-pound digital transformation. They also talked about the support that businesses in the North West require to continually grow and help to ‘level-up’ the country’s economy.

Hotter has been based in Skelmersdale since 1959 and employs around 330 people at its HQ. The business, which provides comfort footwear specifically for the 55+ market, has invested heavily in digitalising customer experience online and in-store in the last 18 months.

During the visit, Rosie met Hotter’s digital team, tried Hotter’s Footprint™ technology and was given a demonstration of the Hotter app AR capabilities. The West Lancashire MP also met several long-serving members of staff; as well as those who are currently undertaking Hotter’s largest ever training programmes across manufacturing, customer service, distribution and engineering. This includes the Lean Management course, a continuous improvement qualification empowering people to take the firm’s future operational changes forward and train colleagues in its concepts.

Ian Watson, CEO at Hotter, said: “It was fantastic to welcome Rosie Cooper MP to Hotter and discuss a wide range of important issues, not only to our business but also to the North West region. We are one of the biggest employers in Skelmersdale and are committed to this area’s success.

“Hotter has concentrated on digital transformation in recent years and this wouldn’t have been possible without our skilled and dedicated team members. Thanks to their dedication and knowledge, we are now a business with a digital-first approach; bolstering Hotter’s future.”
Leading the market in comfort and selling over 1.3 million pairs of shoes each year, Hotter has recently launched its AW21 collection. The brand achieved overall global sales growth of 25% in the first six months of 2021. In the coming fourth quarter, Hotter’s parent company – Electra Private Equity – will become Unbound Group and will list on the AIM market.

Rosie Cooper MP commented: “It has been fantastic to visit Hotter Shoes and hear more about how they are transforming their offering through digital technology and Augmented Reality.

“I have had a fascinating demonstration today of this pioneering approach, which has helped the business to adapt to the pandemic and allows shoppers the convenience of browsing items from home. Hotter are going from strength to strength and I look forward to hearing more about their success going forwards.”

Serving over 4.6 million global customers through its online and mail order channels and via its 17 stores and 6 concessions in the UK, Hotter now reaches 29% of the female population in the UK over the age of 55.

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