WWD.com/retail-news/retail-features/franchised-shops-have-big-role-in-pronovias-future-570484/

MADRID — Pronovias’ founder and chief executive, Alberto Palatchi, told WWD that the Barcelona-based bridal group plans an aggressive rollout of franchised shops beginning next year.

The goal is 300 stores around the world within 10 years.

“We’ll establish the franchises through our own customers [Pronovias has 3,500 points of sale worldwide],” he said in an interview.

“There is a great demand for Pronovias’ franchises worldwide,” he said. “Currently, we’re opening distribution channels in the Mideast and Australia, for example. The objective is a major distribution presence in every country in the world.”

Palatchi said its fastest-growing markets are the U.K., and “the U.S. is becoming very important.”

Referring to Pronovias’ stable of designer labels, including Valentino and Emanuel Ungaro, he said: “We have the best [creative] minds in the world, and this has changed my company. We are in a new era. We are creating an affordable market for designer bridal dresses, from $9,000 to $25,000.”

In addition, the group will unveil a 300,000-square-foot distribution center skirting the Barcelona airport in about three months, Palatchi said.

This story first appeared in the June 28, 2005 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.