All 12 Kira Plastinina stores in the U.S. will close their doors today at 6 p.m., a scant seven months after the first units opened.
This story first appeared in the December 19, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
On Thursday, a sign outside the Kira Plastinina store at 22 West 34th Street read, “Going out of business, best deal ever!” “Tomorrow at 6 p.m. is the last day,” said a store employee. “Everything is 70 percent off. All the stores in the U.S. are closing tomorrow.”
Calls to the company’s corporate office, KP Fashion Company in Los Angeles, went unanswered Thursday.
The Kira Plastinina collection is designed by 16-year-old Kira Plastinina, whose father Sergei Plastinin, a tycoon in the dairy and fruit business in Russia, has bankrolled the concept. There are about 40 Plastinina stores in the Russian Federation. Sergei Plastinin has said he’d like to have 500 stores internationally. The plan for the U.S. was to open 50 stores in the next three years.
Russian oligarchs like Plastinin, who was heavily invested in the Russian stock market, have fallen hard and fast, their declining wealth a reflection of the meltdown of Russia’s stock market. The distressed U.S. economy didn’t help Plastinina, nor did shortcomings in how the chain was operated. The flow of merchandise, especially new styles, was weak, making it difficult for Kira Plastinina to compete with fast fashion retailers such as H&M, whose stores receive new shipments daily.
The Kira Plastinina stores ranged in size from 1,400 square feet, to 5,600 square feet for the West 34th Street unit. Other Kira Plastinina stores are located in SoHo; Americana at Brand in Glendale, Calif.; Beverly Center and Robertson Avenue in Los Angeles; Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills; Shoppingtown Topanga in Canoga Park, Calif.; Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica; Stamford Town Center in Connecticut; Fashion Show Mall in Las Vegas, and Garden State Plaza in Paramus, N.J.