REAL ESTATE

Gap to make Africa debut

BY Staff Writer

San Francisco — Gap announced Wednesday that it will open its first Gap store in Egypt this July, and its first Gap and Banana Republic stores in Morocco in October.

The move is part of the retailer’s global expansion strategy that calls for doubling its franchise stores to 400 by fiscal year 2014.

Gap started shipping to Egypt, Morocco and South Africa in 2010, but these stores are the first on the continent.

“The rapidly growing consumer base in North Africa provides an ideal environment to introduce both Gap and Banana Republic to the continent,” said Stephen Sunnucks, president of International, Gap.

Over the last five years, Gap has grown its franchise store base to more than 180 and expanded from two to 25 countries throughout Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Australia. This latest announcement brings its brands to 29 countries, including Chile and Serbia in fiscal year 2011.

The debut Egypt store will be located in the Mall of Arabia in Cairo; two additional Gap stores will open at Cairo’s City Stars Mall and Sun City Mall this October. The Moroccan premier for Gap and Banana Republic stores will occur in Casablanca, in the city’s new Morocco Mall, opening simultaneously with the mall’s grand opening in October.

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REAL ESTATE

O’Neill Clothing to open Santa Monica flagship

BY Marianne Wilson

New York City — O’Neill Clothing, a surf, snow and youth lifestyle brand, will open a flagship in Santa Monica, Calif., on July 8.

Inspired by the oceanfront home of company founder Jack O’Neill’s, the store is designed to offer an authentic environment to illustrate the brand’s lifestyle. Window displays showcase one-of-a-kind artwork from O’Neill employees and friends, and the interior is lined with various photography from past decades and current advertising campaigns.

"We’re excited to have an opportunity to thoroughly represent the O’Neill brand in Santa Monica," said O’Neill Clothing CEO, Toby Bost. "This global retail concept is the first to be rolled out in the United States, and will showcase everything O’Neill is about in one of the best shopping locations in the country."

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