ABOVE: Sue with Account Managers Phil Tiney and Dan Rogers

Sue Fells Joins The Outdoors Company

Ain’t no mountain high enough for The Outdoors Company as they embark upon the next stage in their plans to offer ‘something different’ to the promotional apparel, workwear and corporatewear sectors.  

TOC are delighted to welcome industry pro, Sue Fells, to the team in the role of Business Development Manager, to develop existing accounts and introduce their many high-end premium brands from the retail market – including The North Face, Berghaus, Patagonia, Rab, Columbia and Helly Hansen – to those prospects who may not previously have been aware of their wholesale availability in the industry.

With over 20 years’ experience working with both suppliers and distributors, Sue brings a wealth of expertise to the company.  She has worked with BTC Activewear, identifying growth opportunities, and most recently with PenCarrie.

“My favourite aspect of the industry over the course of my career has been the diversity of customers and their businesses, ranging from large corporate organisations to the ‘one man band’ working from home. It’s been great to be able to support all of these in growing their businesses and establish long standing relationships.”

No newbie to The Outdoors Company

Sue has been a supporter of the company since its very beginnings back in 2007.

“From my first meeting with Mark and Paul 12 years ago, I have always held them in the highest regard for their politeness, friendliness and professionalism.

“It has been a great example to see the way in which they have grown from a small office with just the two of them, to such an organised, happy environment with 17 staff operating from smart offices and a substantial warehouse in Congleton, Cheshire, with a superb reputation within the industry.”

Industry challenges

Over the last 10 years, Sue has witnessed the online side of the industry increase enormously

“The late ordering ‘next day’ scenario is now the norm that customers have come to expect and the larger distributors have worked hard to keep pace with this.

 “And, as with all suppliers and distributors at this time of Brexit uncertainty, the looming challenge will be dealing with the impact of new tariffs on the cost of goods and lead times.” 

From Sue’s conversations with suppliers and distributors over the last six months or so, she has noticed the subject of Brexit broached less and less the longer the uncertainty persists: “People appear to be just waiting, as is the rest of the country, so it remains difficult to assess what the specific challenges may be,” says Sue.

Sue’s advice to The Outdoors Company, and indeed the industry at large, is to adapt and keep up with the changes Brexit and online ordering pose by maintaining transparency and clear communication; “regular updates regarding stock and deliveries will be key.”   

The next leg of The Outdoors Company’s journey

In her new role, Sue aims to establish TOC as the go-to corporate distributor of premium workwear, corporatewear and promotional apparel across a range of resellers, increasing the company’s visibility within the industry to bring about substantial growth.

ABOVE: Sue learning the ropes with Corporate Sales Manager, Dan Rogers

ABOVE: Sue with Account Managers Nikki Webb and Dan Rogers

“Over the course of hundreds of visits I have made to customers, the first questions I am usually asked are, ‘what have you got that’s different?’’ Is there anything new?’ TOC’s offering is the next step for those resellers wanting to offer that ‘something different ’.”

Sue will be visiting customers and new prospects armed with a range of marketing tools designed to support distributors in promoting these exciting premium retail brands to their customers and differentiating them from the ubiquitous non-branded clothing options available to the industry.

CSV files featuring the entire core range from brands like The North Face, Berghaus, Patagonia, Columbia, Hershel and Arc’teryx, along with a vast bank of corresponding product imagery, will be provided to resellers to support them in listing these premium brand products on their websites.

And brand assets such as lifestyle imagery and brand videos can be shared with resellers to keep their social media feeds fresh and inspiring to customers.  

“In my experience, being able to offer marketing support is an invaluable tool in supporting the resellers in promoting products to their customers.  It makes it easier for the reseller and can create a sense of excitement in the sales office,” says Sue.

Asked about her thoughts on joining The Outdoors Company, Sue said: “TOC have always been the company that I use as an example of how great a company can be and I feel so lucky to now be a part of the team.”

Whether an existing customer or a reseller new to The Outdoors Company’s offering of premium brand workwear, corporatewear and promotional clothing, get in touch if you’d like a visit – 01270 757890 or email sales@theoutdoorscompany.co.uk. #


Featured Image: Sue with Account Managers Phil Tiney and Dan Rogers

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