Topshop is running into delays with its SoHo flagship and is now eyeing a November opening, instead of mid-October as originally hoped.

The New York store, Topshop’s first in the U.S. and highly anticipated considering the retailer’s reputation in Europe as a mecca for fast fashion, is racing to launch in time for holiday selling.

This story first appeared in the September 4, 2008 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

But as a precursor in order to ease anxious American shoppers, the U.K.-based chain will launch a U.S.-dollar version of its Web site on Sept. 9. The Web site debut coincides with the global launch of Topshop’s fall Kate Moss collection, the model’s seventh for the store.

Topshop is offering a free Kate Moss charity T-shirt to the first U.S. customers spending more than $50 on the site. For each T-shirt given, a $5 donation will be made to the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Topshop has 2,000 T-shirts available to give away. features more than 300 new products each week, attracts 800,000 weekly unique visitors, offers seasonal look books, podcasts, blogs, tips on trends and building outfits, fashion forecasts and information on what’s going on with the company.

The SoHo store, at 478 Broadway, is a complicated project expected to have a lot of flash. The 40,000-square-foot site will have four selling floors; glossy shelving; futuristic lighting tubes and a DJ booth, both suspended from the ceiling; an “army” of mannequins; a shoe lounge; 32 changing rooms, and a VIP suite for celebrity clientele.

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