Brooks Brothers has formed a joint venture with the Walton Brown Group, a subsidiary of The Lane Crawford Joyce Group, for Greater China.
The 50/50 deal, which begins in January and runs for 10 years, involves Walton taking over Brooks’ 90 stores in the region and formulating an expansion plan to open more than 10 points of sale over the next two years in key cities in China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. This will include both freestanding stores as well as “a deep investment in a multi-channel distribution platform providing wholesale, outlets, travel retail and e-commerce channels to bolster brand presence and fuel business growth in the region,” according to the companies.
The stores and e-commerce offering in the region will include Brooks’ signature men’s wear as well as the new women’s line designed by Zac Posen.
Claudio Del Vecchio, chairman and chief executive officer of Brooks Brothers, said the joint venture will “enable us to develop long-term growth strategies across multiple online and offline distribution channels especially in China, one of our most important growth markets for our global business. We are confident in China’s growth prospects in the premium sector for the coming years and this is the optimal time for us to position Brooks Brothers for long-term sustainable growth.”
Thomson Cheng, president of Walton Brown, said, “In the 12 years Brooks Brothers has been operating in China, the brand has built a strong following of customers who subscribe to its unique heritage and rich history of design and quality craftsmanship. With the foundation in place, we believe the brand has enormous potential with the new generation of sophisticated and prosperous consumers in China and with the launch of the online business in 2016 we will be able to significantly increase reach with this consumer segment.”
As part of the deal, the companies will open a corporate office and showroom in Hong Kong in early 2016.