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Ittierre Puts Focus on Retail Growth

The company has plans to open shops for Costume National, Karl Lagerfeld Paris, Pierre Balmain, Galliano and Aquascutum in the world’s major shopping capitals.

MILAN — Ittierre SpA is mapping out an aggressive global retail expansion for the brands it produces under licensing agreements.

In the first half, the company plans to open four stores in Hong Kong, three of which will be in the prestigious shopping mall Harbour City in Kowloon: a Balmain Paris boutique, followed by a Pierre Balmain venue, each covering about 1,080 square feet, and the first Costume National flagship, which will be more than 2,160 square feet. A second Costume National store will open in the city’s luxury mall Landmark in the Central District.

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In Italy, Galliano Men’s and Galliano Women’s corners are expected to open in La Rinascente stores in Rome and Florence, respectively, by the end of June.

With Coin department stores, Ittierre has inked an agreement for the opening of 15 directly operated corners, comprising eight C’N’C Costume National and seven GF Ferrè, of which 13 opened in April and two in May. Thirteen more corners are expected to be unveiled in cities from Milan and Florence to Rome and Vicenza.

In the second half, the company plans to open shops for Costume National, Karl Lagerfeld Paris, Pierre Balmain, Galliano, C’N’C and Aquascutum in the world’s major shopping capitals.

Antonio Bianchi, president and chief executive officer of Ittierre SpA, has been injecting new life into the company, which, after two years of government-backed bankruptcy protection, was acquired in January 2011 by Albisetti SpA, founded and controlled by Bianchi. He has expanded the company’s license portfolio with signature collections for designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and brands such as Balmain and rehired 600 employees while exploring opening stores for the first time.

In December, Tommy Hilfiger Group signed a global licensing deal with Ittierre to manufacture and distribute the designer’s women’s and men’s runway collections. Ittierre, based in Pettoranello, Italy, will produce and distribute apparel and the majority of accessories, with distribution focused on Europe, North America and Asia.

Sales in 2011 were expected to total 150 million euros, or $208.5 million at average exchange. Revenues of 200 million euros and 250 million euros, or $256.2 million and $320.2 million at current exchange, are forecast for 2012 and 2013, respectively, because of further development of the group’s licenses.