Turnover at Asda George is on course to top £1bn this year, propelling it well ahead of the other multiples in the clothing stakes. Asda claims to be the third largest clothing retailer in the UK by volume and the biggest player in children's clothes. Asda George md Andy Bond said growth would not simply come from new stores but from encouraging existing customers to purchase clothes as well as food, and through better space utilisation. "Last year was a great year for George," said Bond. "At the beginning of the year, 13% of Asda customers shopped at George. At the end it was 20%. By the end of this year, we're aiming for 30%." Better space management has enabled George to increase its range by 15-20% in some stores without increasing the selling space. Asda's low overheads and purchasing power give it a "huge advantage over high street retailers" he added. Key opportunities identified for this year include driving sales of footwear ­ "an enormous but fragmented market" ­ reducing lead times for clothing to eight weeks, and increasing the amount of joint purchasing with Wal-Mart. Bond is also looking at the potential of developing a petite range and offering sizes between 20-24 across all of its ladieswear lines. "The priorities this year are to continually lower prices, improve quality, get the clothes into the stores more quickly and turn them around more quickly," said Bond. "Consumers see clothes in a magazine today and they want to buy them tomorrow. "By the same token, it's no good getting them there in eight weeks and leaving them sitting there for 12." {{NEWS }}