Shopping Centers Today International

JAN 2016

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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H&M H ennes & Mauritz, the multina- tional retailer out of Sweden, is not the overnight sensation that fast- fashion mavens thought it was when it stormed onto the U.S. scene a decade ago. In fact, the first H&M, then called Hennes, opened almost seven decades ago on a high street in Västerås, Sweden, in 1947. The chain has since moved into 61 countries and opened roughly 4,000 stores, almost doubling its count from five years ago, while posting in excess of $20 billion in annual sales. Much of H&M's early growth took place in Denmark, Switzerland, Ger- many and the U.K.; a half century went by before the chain ventured to North America. "H&M came to the U.S. market in 2000 when it opened its first flagship in New York, and it's just now hitting its stride here," said David Zoba, global retail leasing board chairman at JLL. "They have grown from 200 to more than 350 U.S. stores since 2010 and are now on pace to do 30 stores a year in the States." H&M opened its very largest store, a 63,000-square-foot flagship in New York City's Herald Square, in May. The wide scope of H&M's quick- response supply chain has enabled its rapid expansion. The company has 100 designers but no factories, so it works with 20 contract-production centers, 700 suppliers and 60 pattern makers. About 80 percent of its retail inventory is manufactured in anticipation of fash- ion trends, with the balance produced in response to those very trends. In 2015 H&M opened 375 stores internationally, including first stores in India, Peru, South Africa and Taiwan, while launching online operations in nine markets, among them Russia and Switzerland. Some of its new store mar- kets this year will be Puerto Rico, Cyprus and New Zealand. H&M Beauty has about 700 stores across 28 markets, Sis- ter brand COS (Collection of Style), op- erates 130 stores across nearly 30, Monki has about 90 stores across 13; & Other Stories has 25 across 10, and Weekday has 20 across five. The throngs that appeared outside H&M stores before its Balmain collec- tion rolled out in Novem- ber were a testimony to the chain's ongoing fash- ion edge. Nearly every gar- ment was snapped up the first day, both in stores and online. "We want to excite the customer," Daniel Kulle, president of H&M North America, told Bloomberg TV, com- menting on the lines that began forming 12 hours before the stores opened. "H&M is about fashion quality at the best price," he said. "We are driving brand awareness and driving traffic and driving the top line and getting a healthier bottom line in the process." 32 S C T / J a n u a r y 2 0 1 6

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