NEW YORK -- St. John Knits will open a boutique in the SouthPark Mall in Charlotte, N.C., in June.

It will be the company's first store in the region and its 12th overall. Chairman Robert Gray predicted the store would generate between $1.5 million and $2 million its first year.

"Charlotte is a great area and pulls from a lot of towns within 50 or 75 miles," said Gray, founder of the Irvine, Calif.-based retailer and manufacturer of designer-priced knit ready-to-wear. The boutique, now under construction, will be about 2,800 square feet.

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