REAL ESTATE

Asics to open in Chicago’s Bucktown area

BY Michael Fickes

Chicago — Athletic shoe and apparel retailer ASICS has signed a 5,254-sq.-ft. lease in Chicago’s Bucktown area. According to RKF, who represented the landlord, 1630 Damen LLC c/o Jenel Management Corporation in negotiations for the long-term lease, this will be Asics’ first store in the Midwest and third in the United States when it opens early next year.

Blatteis & Schnur represented Windsor Financial Group, an independent licensee of AsicsAmerica in negotiations.

The new Bucktown store will features 3,292 sq. ft. of retail space and an additional 1,962 sq. ft. on a lower level. The building is a three-story historic retail/residential building in the Bucktown/wicker Parke retail corridor.

Asics’ U.S. flagship is in New York City’s Meatpacking District. The retailer’s other U.S. location is in the Fashion Island Mall in Newport Beach.

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J.Jill unveils new retail store design

BY CSA STAFF

Specialty retailer J.Jill is preparing to roll out a redesigned store concept in four markets across the United States.

"The new approach to store design is based on our understanding of what is important to our customers. We want to delight her with our beautiful, versatile collections and inspire her confidence with our guiding service," said CEO and president Paula Bennett. "The new stores offer her a very warm welcome."

The prototype stores feature lifestyle displays down the center, flanked by individual shops, and expanded dressing rooms. The design was developed and executed by New York-based Kramer Design Group, and evokes the brand’s "uncomplicate" platform, which debuted earlier this year. According to the retailer, "uncomplicate" represents the brand’s way of saying, “Trust us to take care of what you wear, so you can focus on the things in life that are most important to you.”

J.Jill is an expanding, multichannel business and national premiere specialty retailer of misses, petite, tall and women’s clothing with more than 200 stores. Kramer Design Group is a multidisciplinary design firm specializing in retail consumer experiences.

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Rite Aid sees comps increase in October

BY CSA STAFF

Rite Aid’s same-store sales increased by 2.1% this month compared with October 2012. The pharmacy chain also issued an estimate of the negative effects of Hurricane Sandy on its sales.

The increase included a 0.6% decrease in front-end same-store sales and an increase in pharmacy same-store sales of 3.4%, which were lowered by 0.85% due to introductions of new generic drugs. Same-store script count increased by 1.1%. Total sales for the month were $1.961 billion, a 2.2% increase over October 2012. The chain currently operates 4,599 stores.

For the first 34 weeks of the year, same-store sales decreased by 0.1%, including 0.1% decreases in front-end and pharmacy same-store sales, as well as a 0.2% increase in same-store scripts. Total sales were $16.41 billion, compared with $16.46 billion in October 2012.

According to Rite Aid’s estimates, the cycling of the effects of pre-storm sales on last year’s results reduced front-end same-store sales by 1.4% and same-store scripts by 0.3% due to a benefit from an increase in sales in the days that immediately preceded the storm. The company expects the cycling of the effects of the storm to benefit November sales.

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