Forever 21 is planning to expand its presence in Mexico through a licensed model.
Authentic Brands Group, which purchased the retailer out of bankruptcy court in partnership with Simon Property Group and Brookfield Property Partners for $81.1 million in February, has tapped IB Group to serve as licensee for the brand. Under the terms of the deal, IB Group will now take over the operation of Forever 21’s 37 existing stores in that country and roll out a shop-in-shop concept beginning this year. The existing stores had been run by Forever 21 internally in the past.
“Our partnership with IB Group serves as a new launching point for Forever 21 in Mexico,” said Jamie Salter, founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of ABG. “The brand has an incredibly loyal following of fashion-forward, female customers in the region who identify with its unique offerings and collaborations. In recent years, Forever 21 has also seen consistent growth across the men’s category. We’re excited to be working with IB Group to continue the brand’s growth and success in this important market.”
IB Group also operates the Aéropostale stores in Mexico, another retail chain owned by ABG. It has also introduced Champion, Chico’s, London Fog, Capelli, and Soma to the Mexican market.
“In these challenging times, we are creating new opportunities thanks to previous experiences with our portfolio of brands and the knowledge of the IB Group team,” said Carlos Ibarra, chairman of the board of directors of IB Group. “We are excited to continue our partnership with ABG and look forward to creating new opportunities that will broaden distribution for Forever 21 in Mexico.”
Forever 21 operates 590 stores around the world in the U.S., Europe and Southeast Asia in addition to Mexico.