REAL ESTATE

Licensing agreement helps teen retailer expand into India

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

American Eagle Outfitters is entering an emerging global retail market.

The teen retailer is preparing for its debut in India. American Eagle’s expansion will be supported through a multi-year license agreement with the Aditya Birla Group. The Indian conglomerate has an extensive retail portfolio, as well as strong digital and omnichannel capabilities.

The first stores are expected to open in Mumbai and Delhi in Spring 2018.

“India’s rapidly developing and vibrant economy, anchored by the world’s largest youth population, provides an exciting growth opportunity for our brands, expanding our global reach,” commented Andrew McLean, executive VP — global commercial operations, American Eagle. “Aditya Birla brings deep market experience and extensive retail capabilities, giving us a strong platform to deliver our leading AE jeans collections and casual American style to India’s growing market.”

The new expansion comes on the heels of the retailer’s recent decision to pull the plug on another international operation: its U.K.-based business. The specialty retailer operated three stores in the U.K., as well as a British e-commerce site.

Looking ahead to the remainder of fiscal 2017, American Eagle plans to open 35 American Eagle Outfitters and Aerie stores throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico. It also plans to close between 25 and 40 store locations.

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