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WWD Denim News: APC Opens Third Hong Kong Outpost / Levi Strauss Launches Global Division


APC Opens Third Hong Kong Outpost


From WWD ISSUE 06/18/2009


APC??™s Wyndham Street store (Photo by Courtesy Photo)

HONG KONG ??” French fashion house APC has opened its third store in the heart of the Central shopping and entertainment district here.

The 500-square-foot unit on pedestrian-heavy Wyndham Street here features a contemporary blend of exposed and shabby concrete beams, pale timbers, well-lit mirrors and a rectangular black aluminum and glass facade. It was designed by architect Laurent Deroo, who also did APC??™s stores in Tokyo??™s Harajuku area and Los Angeles.

Jean Touitou, APC??™s founder and owner, flew in to attend an opening party featuring a performance by French rock band Housse de Racquet and visit his other stores in the region.

Hong Kong has hit the radar for this recent expansion, but Japan, where Touitou made his first Asian foray with APC, is no longer a focus for growth. In recent years, APC has closed some stores there and intends to focus more on Paris than Tokyo.

???There used to be about 20 stores [in Japan], but we now have about 15,??? said Touitou, sipping tea in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel here, adding that his focus is shifting to his home turf, partly because the economic environment is not conducive to doing both.

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Levi Strauss Launches Global Division

by Ellen Groves

From WWD ISSUE 06/18/2009


Maurizio Donadi (Photo by Courtesy Photo)

The division will be based in Amsterdam and the firm has tapped Polo Ralph Lauren Corp.??™s Maurizio Donadi as its senior vice president, in charge of some 30 people. The team, to which further outside talent may be recruited, will develop handcrafted styles from Levi??™s archives plus premium contemporary jeans and casual clothing, using the best materials on the market, according to Armin Broger, president of Levi Strauss Europe, Middle East and North Africa.

???We wanted to offer all those who love the Levi??™s brand an opportunity to experience the highest expression of our design and craftsmanship,??? Broger told WWD. ???People today crave authenticity, honesty and simplicity in all aspects of their lives. I believe that in our industry, there is no brand with greater authenticity, truer passion or deeper expertise than Levi??™s.???

Targeting selected retailers, the first designs will hit the market in 2010 and part of the collection will be made in the U.S. The division??™s name, XX, is an abbreviation for ???extra, extra strong,??? an expression coined to refer to the quality of the denim Levi??™s used to make the world??™s first pair of jeans in 1873.

Donadi, who took up his role this week, is described by Broger as ???highly competent and absolutely passionate about denim.???

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–Nikki Cho Russo

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Posted Jun 18 2009 in Uncategorized

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