Welcome aboardWinter 2016
Musto – the specialist sailing and outdoor pursuits clothing brand – is the latest tenant to sail in and drop anchor at St. Katharine Docks.
As London’s only private marina – a working global destination among the sailing fraternity – it seems very fitting that the newest tenant to take occupancy at International House, St. Katharine Docks, is Musto. This world-leading sailing, shooting, ski and equestrian sports brand has recently moved into 7,000 square feet of office space that has been customised to meet their exact needs.
The dual aspect workplace – overlooking the marina on one side and Tower Bridge on the other – is now home to 70 Musto employees, three product showrooms, an in-house café/break out area and bespoke ‘vaults’ that house the company’s precious samples and prototypes.
“The Musto team lives and breathes everything marine so we had to practice what we preach when looking for our new headquarters,” says Alex Russell, Musto’s International Marketing Manager. “To say St. Katharine Docks is a perfect fit is an understatement. We already have a huge customer base here in London (70% of its website sales can be attributed to the capital) and we can confidently say probably every boat owner here at the Docks has an item of Musto clothing or equipment. Being here makes our brand more convincing – the berths, yachts and River Thames provide a relevant backdrop that adds a massive amount of provenance to the brand.”
Musto is a growing specialist sports brand that has its roots in technical sailing clothing. At the very top end it designs, tests and produces garments for the most extreme sailing conditions, with items taking between three and six years to evolve from prototypes to the finished product. Many ‘testers’ find their way to crew members on the arduous Volvo Ocean Race, which takes on the notoriously perilous Southern Ocean.
“There’s no better base for us than St. Katharine Docks,” says Alex. “The location gives us incredible confidence when dealing with suppliers and the marina setting gives us extra authenticity – to be able to say to clients ‘you can sail right up to our office and moor virtually outside our front door’ gives us huge cachet in the sailing world. The Docks also position us where our burgeoning audience is – especially the creative and tech-driven sector, who appreciate craftsmanship and innovation.”
As well as the natural link between Musto, the marina and sailing, the location at St. Katharine Docks is important for the other parts of the business. The country pursuits side of Musto – equally as durable apparel for the shooting, mountain and equestrian sets – relies on links with Central London stockists, UK-wide suppliers and more rural concessions. “The Docks are superbly connected by way of public transport, allowing us to network across the country with ease.”
Alex does, however, emphasise how important it is for the Musto team to be grounded in St. Katharine Docks. “The inspiration we gain from looking out the window, watching boats sailing under the West Dock bridge or a skipper getting his boat ready to sail, can’t be found anywhere else in London.” Like all the office tenants at St. Katharine Docks, Musto has access to a floating pontoon events space and a floating meeting room in the West Dock – and the company already has plans to utilise these unique features: “Our headquarters is hosting the Musto International Conference this year, where stakeholders and clients from across the world visit us to see our collections for Autumn/Winter 2017. We already have exciting plans to incorporate the floating pontoon into our conference, as well as intentions to entertain our guests in the many wonderful bars and restaurants that are on our doorstep. We really want to show off our new location as much as we do our new products – you could say we can’t wait to fly the St. Katharine Dock's flag.