LONDON — Talbots, which opened its first store in Europe Thursday in suburban Kingston-Upon-Thames here, next week will examine Spain and France for expansion on the Continent.
Arnold Zetcher, president and chief executive officer of the Hingham, Mass.-based chain, said focus groups will be held in Paris and Madrid, and stores should begin opening in Continental Europe in 1996. The chain, known for its classic and conservative women’s styling, is planning to open 150 to 200 units in Europe over the next six years, he added. In and around London, the chain plans three more store openings next fall, although sites have not yet been selected, said Zetcher. The ultimate goal is 30 stores in the U.K. According to Zetcher, the London unit should mirror the performance of a typical Talbots store in the U.S. That calls for breaking even on an operating basis and achieving sales of $2.2 million in the first year of business.
The 3,575-square-foot store, located next to the Bentall Centre shopping mall, carries the full range of Talbots ready-to-wear, legwear, jewelry, footwear, accessories and petites.
Prices are in line with U.S. prices; wool jackets range from about $164 to $250 (106-162 pounds).