Press information

22-May-2014 | 2149-EN

Maritime chic for fashionistas from 0 to 924 months -

Petit Bateau is OEKO-TEX® Company of the Month for May 2014

The traditional French label Petit Bateau has specialised in the manufacture of clothing and linen for babies and infants for a long time. Over time, the company has expanded its product range to include adult lines - and thanks to the involvement of "hip" designers", they have had great success. The new collections aim to sharpen their profile without neglecting their traditions in the sectors of linen and knitted goods. In doing this, many of the items from the French clothing manufacturer Petit Bateau meet the human-ecological requirements of the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100.

In France, Petit Bateau has achieved cult status. Whole generations of French people have grown up in romper suits, sleepsuits, underwear and pyjamas with the little boat logo. No wonder - the traditional label was established back in 1893 in the former stronghold of knitting, Troyes, as a high-quality supplier of children's clothes. Even at that time, mothers appreciated the products because their quality stood up to so many tests. And top quality is still a focus at Petit Bateau today: "The quality concept has been essential to us for a long time. One could even call it the DNA of our company", explains Pierre Antoine Perrot, Chief Operating Officer. Following the entry of the Yves Rocher group in 1988, Petit Bateau was already making 40 percent of its turnover in the mid-2000s abroad. A further turnaround took place when the product range was expanded to include adult fashion, triggered by one particular event. In 1994 it was no less than Karl Lagerfeld who helped the Petit Bateau brand to achieve new popularity. The fashion designer sent Claudia Schiffer down the catwalk wearing a Petit Bateau shirt under a Chanel outfit and thus started a new trend. Overnight, women became used to the idea of wearing T-shirts in size "14 years". In the following years, the demand for T-shirts for children and young people experienced a real boom. "We took advantage of this trend and since then have also offered collections for "adults" - albeit in adult sizes such as S, M, L" outlined Pierre Antoine Perrot.

Petit Bateau is primarily concerned with the quality concept. As a result of this principle, the company consistently insists on the vertical integration of all product levels - from knitting and dying to textile finishing and the manufacture of ready-made clothes. With its 2800 employees, the company manufactures more than 28 million pieces of clothing each year at its locations in France, Morocco and Tunisia, mainly using cotton or mixtures of natural fibres. One focus is still the collections for babies and infants. For these young citizens of the world there is an extensive range of romper suits, sleepsuits, underwear and nightwear made of molton, terrycloth or velour. All articles in this segment are certified according to the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 and meet the most stringent human-ecological requirements for certification in product class I (baby articles). The range for this target group also includes child-friendly accessories such as soft toys, rattles, shoes and hats. A special customer service offered by Petit Bateau is the option to personalise their products, for example, with the name of its wearer.

The trademark of the Petit Bateau collections is a maritime look, often with a striped pattern in bright colours or on a white background. The company demonstrates its creativity by cooperating with fashion designers, sometimes with seasonally changing collections, which are often grouped together under a particular motto, like "Christmas", "Vichy checks" or "Red gloss". Pierre Antoine Perrot is convinced about the benefits of this cooperation: "We are making the fashion of today - and this includes stylish, fresh and ever more surprising collections. The creative cooperation with Christian Lacroix & Opéra de Paris, Carven, Tsumori Chissato and Hervé Tullet can bring us all of this."

The success of Petit Bateau in its clear positioning as a quality and brand-aware label is primarily due to the well thought-out distribution of its products. With over 400 stores around the world, the company is able to present itself at the point of sale with a comprehensive market appearance. In addition, Petit Bateau uses a number of specialist retail partners as suppliers and this is supplemented by a modern web-based shopping platform.

Petit Bateau adopts special responsibilities where environmental protection and sustainability are concerned. The company had its first articles in its range certified in accordance with the specifications of the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 back in 2000 - in accordance with the ideals of the Yves Rocher group company. Pierre Antoine Perrot is convinced that the certifications represent a guarantee for sustainable company success: "Even with clothing and linen that is worn close to the skin, it is almost a must today that products are classified as safe with regard to harmful substances as well as offering flawless quality." For some time, the company has also been investing in steps to improve its environmental balance. This includes, in the first place, comprehensive measures for the avoidance and/or restriction of harmful substances in production, the observation of limit values in waste water and exhaust air, as well as an optimised use of energy. As a result of the installation of modern energy and water-saving systems in different areas, significant energy reductions could be recorded within the company. With the help of the company's own water treatment plant in Troyes, for example, process water can be reused. Pierre Antoine Perrot is sure that the investments represent significant added value both for the company on the one hand and for customers on the other: "During the last year, we have succeeded in saving half a litre of water in the production of each baby bodysuit. This doesn't sound like much but it all adds up to an enormous achievement. Incidentally, we are convinced that products that have been tested for harmful substances and which are also environmentally friendly are the products of the future. We just have to be aware of our target group".

Contact:

Petit Bateau
15 Rue du Lieutenant Pierre Murard
10000 Troyes
FRANCE

Phone: +33 325 713 636
Internet: www.petit-bateau.com

OEKO-TEX® Company of the Month

In 2011, OEKO-TEX® launched the “Company of the Month” campaign. The objective is to highlight all those companies of the textile chain who stand out on account of their above average commitment to human ecological product safety and sustainable production conditions. The application to be „Company of the Month“ is open to all businesses with a valid OEKO-TEX® certification.

Each month, an OEKO-TEX® jury will select one company from all applications received. This company will then be explicitly named and presented on the internet campaign page at www.oeko-tex.com/company-of-the-month as well as in publications such as the newsletter and press releases by the OEKO-TEX® Association.

All Companies of the Month will also be visibly marked with the campaign logo in the OEKO-TEX® Buying Guide at www.oeko-tex.com/products and they will receive a corresponding certificate and free web banners for use in their own publications and sales channels.

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Helmut Müller

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Helmut Müller

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