“We have targeted Canada, as this is a very strong outerwear market,” said Gavin Haig, chief executive officer of Belstaff. “We know we can’t conquer all of the Americas at once so we continue to build in locations where we have a very strong business in the East, West and Canada.
“We have seen exponential growth in Canada over the last three seasons,” Haig added. “The time was right to expand on this. The newly renovated Yorkville Village is the ideal location to showcase our great outerwear and we want to be able to compete with the other best outerwear brands in the world. We plan to start in Toronto and review additional expansion post this opening.”
Haig said the brand will continue to expand in the U.K., parts of the Americas and Northern Europe, along with Germany and Japan. “These key pillar markets are where we already have strong brand awareness, or in the case of Japan, where we know we would have a good response due to our strong brand heritage and dedication to craftsmanship,” said Haig. “Belstaff will continue to make further negotiations for 2018 for additional retail and see Japan as the platform to continue within Asia. We are looking at South Korea, Hong Kong and mainland China and are in early discussions for these markets too.”
The Hankyu Men’s Tokyo store will launch today. This is the fifth store in Japan, following the brand’s launch in the Ginza Six complex earlier this year. Situated in the International Designers Resort and Casual Style room, the 215-square-foot store was designed by an in-house team. The store will feature a bike table display, black steel rails and bright lighting fixtures and will carry the men’s fall collection.
Meanwhile, Canada will see Belstaff’s first stand-alone retail space in the country, in Toronto’s Yorkville Village. The 861-square-foot store will launch on Sept. 1 and will stock the brand’s full men’s range including denim, outerwear, footwear and accessories. The Canadian outpost will be designed with modular fixtures and will include a motorcycle in a glass facade.
Belstaff is part of the fashion subsidiaries of the Belgian company JAB Holdings, which put the outerwear brand as well as Bally and Jimmy Choo on the selling block this past spring. Choo was acquired by Michael Kors Holdings earlier this month for $1.2 billion and JAB continues to seek buyers for Bally and Belstaff.