BCBG’S NEW GROWTH SPURT
Byline: Teena Hammond
LOS ANGELES — BCBG is on the move.
In addition to expanding and updating some of the BCBG stores, the company is launching a new swimwear line and breaking out its Parallel line into a separate boutique this month.
A 1,200-square-foot Parallel unit will open on Robertson Blvd. in Los Angeles on Sept. 25 and is expected to bring in $1 million in annual sales, said Max Azria, president and designer of the Los Angeles-based BCBG, a contemporary sportswear manufacturer and retailer.
A second Parallel site will open in Newport Beach at Fashion Island mall. This store will open before the holiday season, Azria said. BCBG is looking for a New York site for Parallel, and a fourth unit is planned.
The four Parallel stores would each average 1,200 square feet and could pull in $1 million in sales each, he said.
The swimwear line will be shown Oct. 6 and is being manufactured by Raj Manufacturing. The line will feature nine different styles in one- and two-piece suits. It’s expected to be sold at better department and specialty store chains, as well as the BCBG boutiques.
The firm is also redesigning its BCBG stores.
“It’s a concept where the prime move is to be very minimalist. It’s a very light store — modern, sleek and airy,” Azria explained.
The first revamped store opened July 11 at Fashion Island. The unit expanded from 1,500 square feet to 3,800 square feet. It was bringing in $1.5 million in sales and is expected to reap $4 million in annual sales, Azria said.
The site on Madison Avenue and 66th Street in New York will also be reworked. The 2,800-square-foot store will close for two months either at the end of the year or early next year and will reopen before June 1998 with 8,000 square feet of selling space. The store currently brings in more than $4 million in sales, and the new format is expected to pull in about $7 million in annual sales, Azria said. The space was occupied by Goldpfeil, as well as a hair salon and a graphic design firm.
BCBG is also looking for a larger site for its Lenox Square store in Atlanta and is seeking a spot at the Forum Shops at Caesar’s in Las Vegas, in addition to its site at the Fashion Show Mall in Las Vegas, Azria said.
BCBG currently operates 39 stores and expects to have 51 open by year’s end. About 50 percent of the stores will be converted to the new format by next spring, Azria said.