DICKSON GETS ACTIVE WITH BENETTON

Byline: Vivki M. Young

NEW YORK — Dickson Concepts International Ltd. has strengthened its retail foothold throughout Asia and China.
The Hong Kong-based luxury goods distributor on Wednesday said it entered into an exclusive distribution and franchise agreement with Benetton Group SpA for the Taiwan market. Under the terms of the agreement, Dickson would distribute and retail the complete range of men’s wear and women’s wear under the Benetton and Sisley labels as well as children’s wear under the O12 label.
Dickson said it already has taken over 75 shops and opened additional Benetton and Sisley shops at Core Pacific City, Taipei. The company currently operates 36 Benetton Shops, 29 Sisley shops and a dozen O12 shops in Taipei, extending Dickson’s existing retail network in Taiwan to more than 160 shops.
Also in the works for spring-summer 2002 is the launch of Benetton’s Hip Site, a new line for teenage boys and girls.
Dickson’s investment in the expansion of Benetton is $12.8 million, funded from internal resources, the company said. Amounts have been converted to U.S. dollars at current exchange rates.
Dickson distributes brands such as Polo Ralph Lauren, S.T. Dupont, Tod’s, Coach, Brooks Bros. and Charles Jourdan throughout China and southeast Asia. After Hong Kong, Taiwan is the firm’s second-largest market.
In addition, Dickson will open a second Seibu Department Store in Shenzhen, China, during the last quarter of 2002 at the Citic City Plaza, an upscale development in the Futian district where the Shenzhen city government complex has its offices. Seibu will occupy more than 140,000 square feet on the ground and second floors. The Citic City Plaza, which totals 700,000 square feet over six levels, is linked to Shenzhen’s subway system.
The existing Seibu Department Store operated by Dickson in the Lowu district houses top brands such as Louis Vuitton, Polo Ralph Lauren, Cartier, Hugo Boss, Burberry and Cerruti.
In other developments, Dickson said it opened 34 new shops and corners, with three in Hong Kong, 17 in Taiwan, two in Singapore and 12 in China. The shops in Taiwan are in addition to the ones related to the Benetton agreement. The shops and corners opened under the names Chopard, Polo Jeans Co., Kenneth Cole, Fratelli Rosetti and other brands within Dickson’s distribution umbrella. The firm’s retail network totals 60 shops and corners in Hong Kong, 162 in Taiwan, 22 in Singapore and 64 in China.
Dickson said it plans to open at least 10 new shops and corners by the end of March 2002, when its current fiscal year ends.

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