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Retail Remains Open in Ukraine

Tensions between the West and Russia may be rising over Crimea, but that hasn’t stopped European brands in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev from trading.

Tensions between the West and Russia may be rising over Crimea, but that hasn’t stopped European brands in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev from trading.

This story first appeared in the March 20, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

A Ferragamo spokesman said the brand’s store never shut — even during the height of the violent antigovernment protests earlier this year. He said that, due to the current situation, footfall on Kreshatyk Passage, the luxury shopping street where Ferragamo is located, has slowed, “but our store has never been closed, and all the planned marketing activities with our partners are continuing, but with a ‘soft profile.’”

A spokeswoman for Tom Ford said the Kiev store is currently open, but had been closed on-and-off since December due to the crisis. Chanel and Zara are also open, as is Marks & Spencer, which has 12 stores in Ukraine, half of which are in Kiev. “Some of the Kiev stores temporarily closed last month as a precaution. But now they are all trading, and we are working with our franchise partner to monitor the situation,” an M&S spokeswoman said Wednesday.

As reported, Fabergé, the London-based high-end jeweler, closed its Kiev boutique for the second time earlier this week due to “heightening security fears,” according to a spokeswoman. The store had been closed temporarily in February, and only reopened on March 4. Stephen Webster’s Kiev boutique was temporarily closed in February and early March, but the store has since reopened.