Despite the volatile economy in Spain, Coach Inc. is gearing up to open its first flagship in Madrid this November.
Locatedin Salamanca, a district likened to the Champs-Elysées in Paris orFifth Avenue in New York, the new 3,000-square-foot store marks thebrand’s second location in the city.
Coach, which entered theSpanish market in October 2010 through a partnership with El CorteInglés, operates shops-in-shop in Barcelona, Madrid, Marbella andValencia.
According to Ian Bickley, president of Coach international, the brand has developed a strong following in Spain, despite the ailing economy there.
“There’s no doubt thatthe economic backdrop in Spain has been quite tough,” Bickley told WWD.“We entered the market in 2010, and we’ve been building a strongfollowing with local consumers since. We see the brand resonating. We’vereally succeeded in building fashion credibility with influencers inSpain, such as Princess Letizia of Asturias.”
Although Bickleydeclined to quantify that success numerically, he did note thatcomparable-store sales in Spain have been positive during the slowdown.
ForCoach, the space will give it the opportunity to “express” its DNA byshowcasing both men’s and women’s lifestyle collections, which includesshoes, apparel, handbags and jewelry, the exec said.
Designed bythe Coach Architecture Group, the store, which is located at Serrano22, will retain the building’s historic details, such as original ornateceilings, plaster columns and marble floors.
Inside, shopperswill find a women’s shoe salon and a boutiquelike jewelry area. Therewill also be a men’s area that will feature an assortment of bags, smallleather goods, accessories and outerwear. An LED screen for digitaldisplays will complement the white and black lacquer millwork along withthe stone flooring and industrial-inspired furnishings.
“Wereally see a great growth opportunity in Europe for Coach,” Bickleyoffered, adding that the brand is making investments in its team, storesand its infrastructure there.
Even though the economy in Europe has seen better days, Coach’s focus on the region is linked to high tourism there.
“Ifwe think about key cities, we are focusing on Paris and on London,”Bickley said, noting that the brand already has a flagship in London,but not yet in Paris. “Paris is the place with the largest touristpopulation in Europe. We’ve earmarked Paris, Milan and Munich.”
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