– BURBERRY OPENS IN AZERBAIJAN: Burberry is looking east. The London-based fashion and luxury goods firm opened its first store in Azerbaijan Friday, in Baku, the country’s capital. The 2,368-square-foot store is located on Neftchiler Avenue in the city, and carries the Burberry Prorsum women’s wear collection, alongside Burberry London’s men’s and women’s lines. It also carries Burberry’s accessories — including the label’s Warrior bag — and the brand’s eyewear, fragrances and timepieces. Other brands on Neftchiler Avenue include Escada and Ermenegildo Zegna, while Emporio Armani, Versace and Tru Trussardi all have stores in Baku. New York-based architecture firm O’Neil Langan designed the Burberry store, and its interiors are decorated with pale stone floors and dark wood fittings. This summer, the company plans to open a seventh Russian store inEkaterinburg and its first Hungarian store, in Budapest.
– HERMES’ NEW FOUNDATION: Hermès International said Tuesday it was establishing a foundation to oversee its philanthropic endeavors and to bolster its efforts in social and environmental responsibility. The Fondation d’Entreprise Hermès, headquartered in Paris and with an initial five-year mission, will be dedicated to promoting and preserving craft skills and supporting such creative fields as design, visual arts and performing arts, the company said. On the corporate social responsibility front, Hermès plans to support organizations that promote education and training and support environmental research. Hermès said the foundation has a budget of 18.5 million euros, or $28.8 at current exchange, and would be run by Catherine Tsekenis.
– NEW CREDIT FACILITY: AnnTaylor Stores Corp. has increased its revolving credit facility to $250 million from $175 million, according to a Securities and Exchange filing on Tuesday. The new facility, which involves six banks including Bank of America N.A., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Wachovia Bank N.A., also allows AnnTaylor to borrow an additional $100 million. The company said in the filing that it does not anticipate borrowing against the new facility to fund working capital needs of the business.