REMODELING COSTS STALL DKNY TALKS
Byline: Mark Tosh
NEW YORK — The Donna Karan Co.’s effort to lease space for a DKNY flagship store on the east side of Madison Avenue at 60th Street may have hit a snag.
Real estate sources said this week that negotiations between Donna Karan and Williams Real Estate Co., the manager and renting agent for 655 Madison Ave., have bogged down. One issue, according to reports, is whether the property owners will provide Donna Karan with “build-out money” to remodel the proposed 30,000-square-foot location to meet the firm’s specifications.
The site is across the street from the new Calvin Klein store and a block south of Barneys New York.
Stephen Ruzow, president and chief operating officer of Donna Karan, was in Hong Kong Thursday and unavailable for comment, according to a spokeswoman. She said no other Karan executives could comment on the talks.
Jerome Cohen, a general partner in the property and chairman of Williams, declined to comment on the reports.
Meanwhile, a number of other companies — Tommy Hilfiger and Guess are two of them — are waiting for large Madison Avenue locations. It could not immediately be determined whether Williams was looking for an alternative deal or whether it was hoping to get the negotiations with Karan back on track.