By  on June 7, 2013

NEW YORK — “My dream was to have a shop in New York. Now I’m ready to do it,” said Serge Cajfinger, president and artistic director of Paule Ka, the French ready-to-wear firm.

In 2011, London-based private equity firm Change Capital Partners bought a 70 percent stake in Paule Ka to accelerate the brand’s international expansion. Today, the company is established in 56 countries and distributed through more than 475 points of sale. There are 58 freestanding Paule Ka stores globally, 13 of which are owned directly by the firm.

The U.S. market has been on the designer’s bucket list for many years. The 26-year-old company is getting its feet wet this summer with a 560-square-foot pop-up shop that opened on Jobs Lane in Southampton on Memorial Day weekend. It will also open its first New York showroom at 595 Madison Avenue, a 4,000-square-foot space on the eighth floor, this week. “I never had a New York office,” said Cajfinger, on a visit to New York last week. The company normally sets up sales appointments at the Bryant Park Hotel. Its U.S. distribution includes Mitchell’s, Richard’s, Tootsie’s, Fivestory, neimanmarcus.com, saks.com and halsbrook.com. “Now we have a permanent home,” said Susan Kelly, vice president, who oversees the U.S. business.


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