Inside the new Lacoste store.

<STRONG>LACOSTE HEADS DOWNTOWN</STRONG>: Lacoste has joined the fashion flock in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood with its newest company-owned store, located at 136 Prince Street. The 1,200-square-foot unit houses the realm of Lacoste products,...

LACOSTE HEADS DOWNTOWN: Lacoste has joined the fashion flock in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood with its newest company-owned store, located at 136 Prince Street. The 1,200-square-foot unit houses the realm of Lacoste products, including women’s, men’s and children’s apparel as well as handbags, footwear and fragrance.

The SoHo location is the company’s third in Manhattan, and its 29th full-price U.S. store. It is part of a larger retail rollout plan that includes the opening of five more stores this year.

“SoHo has always been a destination for cutting-edge fashion, and since Lacoste has emerged as a true fashion brand, this location was just a logical step in the rollout of new boutiques,” said Robert Siegel, chairman and chief executive officer of Lacoste USA.

The unit is located between the Kieselstein-Cord and Swiss Army stores in a space formerly occupied by Nicole Miller. Among the items for sale are a range of brightly colored merchandise, such as polos with puffy shoulders, selling for $80; miniskirts, for $70, and a tennis dress, for $140, all of which are set against a sleek and uncluttered white store design.

REEBOK AWARDS FOUR: Reebok was set to honor four human-rights activists Wednesday night at the 2005 Reebok Human Rights Awards in Los Angeles. The recipients, all under the age of 30, have made significant nonviolent contributions to human rights and were to receive a $50,000 grant from the athletic company to help further their work. This year’s honorees are Zarema Mukusheva of Chechnya, Carlos Rojas of Mexico, Aloysius Toe of Liberia and Charm Tong of Myanmar. Reebok began presenting the awards in 1988 and has since honored 80 recipients from around the world.

WILSON DEAL: Wilson Sporting Goods has signed a licensing deal with Fruit of the Loom for a line of Wilson brand athletic apparel for the midtier market.

The merchandise, which will hit stores for spring 2006, will include athletic tops and bottoms and have products for men, women and children, said a company spokeswoman. She said prices and specific sales projections are still being determined.

The company is targeting stores such as Belk, Mervyn’s, Sears, Kohl’s and J.C. Penney. Fruit of the Loom came out of bankruptcy in 2002 and is now a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Wilson, based in Chicago, is a division of Amer Sports.

This story first appeared in the May 12, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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