PARIS — Groupe Galeries Lafayette said Monday it has entered into exclusive negotiations to take over the lease of the former Virgin Megastore on Avenue des Champs-Élysées here.
The building, located at number 52 of the world-famous thoroughfare, would become a new Galeries Lafayette flagship alongside its historic store on Boulevard Haussmann, it said. The retailer expects to sign the lease for the 97,000-square-foot store before the end of the year.
It is just the latest shake up since Nicolas Houzé took over as chief executive officer of Groupe Galeries Lafayette’s department-store division last year, launching a program he has dubbed Ambitions 2020.
In a separate development, the retailer is set to part ways with advertising agency Aubert Storch Associés Partenaires and photographer Jean-Paul Goude, who has shot its advertising campaigns since 2000. The collaboration produced memorable images such as an almost-unrecognizable Laetitia Casta dressed in a tuxedo. Goude also photographed personalities including Jean Paul Gaultier, Diane von Furstenberg and Pedro Almodóvar.
Groupe Galeries Lafayette has short-listed agencies including BETC Paris, Fred & Farid, Saturday Group, TBWA Paris and Sid Lee for the contract. A spokeswoman declined to comment on reports that its advertising budget totals 15 million euros to 20 million euros, or $18.8 million to $25 million, a year.