Abercrombie & Fitch has stolen a march on Peter Alexander, opening an Australian-themed up-market lingerie store in the US.
The Gilly Hicks Sydney store has opened in Masssachusetts three months ahead of Just Group’s planned Peter Alexander launch in California.
A&F plans to open a further five Gilly Hicks Sydney outlets in the next month, including in a Westfield centre in Illinois.
While A&F says there is potential for 800 stores, Peter Alexander plans just 50 outlets long-term.
Just Group’s CEO, Jason Murray, said he was unconcerned by potential rivalry in the marketplace because the companies were offering slightly different products.
Gilly was focusing on women’s underwear and Peter Alexander would sell unisex sleepwear and gifts for men, women and children, he said.
Murray said, however, he was “curious” to see how A&F had interpreted its Australian theme, but Peter Alexander would not respond by filling its stores with kangaroos.
Abercrombie & Finch has reportedly invested $US7.5 million in 2006 and up to $US15 million in 2007 in the new brand.
With Inside Retailing