If the almost 800 people lined up outside two Hennes & Mauritz stores that launched at South Coast Plaza shopping center here Thursday are an accurate indicator, the Swedish fast-fashion company has room to grow in Southern California.
COSTA MESA, Calif. — If the almost 800 people lined up outside two Hennes & Mauritz stores that launched at South Coast Plaza shopping center here Thursday are an accurate indicator, the Swedish fast-fashion company has room to grow in Southern California.
H&M's dual debut at South Coast Plaza unveiled a 20,000-square-foot store selling women's, men's and children's apparel and accessories and an 8,000-square-foot unit carrying an edited selection of fashion-forward women's apparel and accessories.
"There were two fantastic spaces," said Lisa Sandberg, U.S. communications director for H&M. "We don't feel this market has been saturated at all….We're looking for more opportunities in the Orange County [region]."
And the retailer proved it on Friday, opening a third Orange County store in the Irvine Spectrum Center. The 15,000-square-foot unit sells women's, men's and junior merchandise. The trifecta brought the H&M store count in Southern California to six. "It's the first time we've opened three stores in two days in the U.S.," noted Sandberg. Roughly 400 people lined up to get into the Irvine store.
Though the company's West Coast flagship is a mere 45 minutes north of Costa Mesa at the Beverly Center shopping center in Los Angeles, Sandberg said she wasn't surprised by the lines. "The people in Orange County really need to have stores in Orange County to shop," she said. "The [high-low] melting pot that's going on in America's closet right now is really happening here. And that's what we've been saying all along — it's OK to mix and match."
Sandberg likened the atmosphere of the smaller unit to a boutique shopping experience. The company has been launching variations on the all-women's concept for years in locations such as New York and Sweden. "It's a store for women who know fashion," she said. "As the market matures, we'll branch away from bigger stores and open more focused stores like this."
Anton Segerstrom, general manager of South Coast Plaza, surveyed the crush of shoppers from inside the larger store. "H&M is one of the hottest brands and that's what our customers expect from us," he said.Frankie Parra from Santa Ana, Calif., showed up at 2:30 a.m. with three friends to be first in line at the larger of the two units. "We love the clothes and it's just really fun to be here," said Parra, who added that he hoped to buy summer basics, including shorts and T-shirts.
Lissette Fernandez and Genesis Flores of La Habra, Calif., held the number-one spot at the smaller store. "We've been here since 5:30 a.m. and all we got was a $10 gift certificate," Fernandez said. Still, that disappointment was short-lived. As store staff began a countdown to the cutting of the red ribbon, the college freshman jumped up and down, chanting, "I love H&M."
Separately, the Swedish retailer, on Monday said sales in March surged 29 percent, besting analyst's estimates. H&M credited warm weather conditions, as well strong collections such as the Madonna range, for luring shoppers into the store. Like-for-like sales spiked 17 percent. "To accomplish such figures, new collections have to be very strong," said Nils Vinge, H&M's head of investor relations. "The lines were very much appreciated."
The pop star's collection was introduced last month at H&M stores in 26 countries.
According to Vinge, calendar effects accounted for 3 percent of the March increase. H&M operated 1,386 stores at the end of March, up from 1,216 and the end of last March.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)