Bebe to launch in Greater China
Fashion brand Bebe has partnered with Shanghai-based Longgoal to open up to 150 stores in Greater China.
“As we continue to expand our international footprint, our entrance into Greater China is a significant opportunity to accelerate that growth and reinforce bebe as a global lifestyle brand for women,” said Jim Wiggett, CEO of Bebe stores Inc.
“We look forward to working closely with the Longgoal team, which has a proven track record of success and operational experience in introducing high profile retail brands to this key market.”
Bebe and Longgoal has signed a strategic cooperation agreement which includes a five-year exclusive license to open between 60 and 150 retail and wholesale bebe points of distribution in Greater China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. The first boutique is expected to open in the summer of 2016.
Longgoal is the Chinese agency for Gant, the American Sportswear brand for which it operates 130 stores, and Thomas Pink, the luxury British shirt brand under the LVMH Group.
As a part of the agreement, Longgoal will open a minimum of 60 points of sale in Mainland China, including free standing boutiques and Bebe shops-in-shops and identify third party retailers in certain provinces of China to sublicense the brand for retail operations. Longgoal is currently identifying potential locations in Shanghai and Beijing, including flagship boutiques. After the five-year exclusive term, Longgoal retains an option for an additional 10 year partnership with bebe based on performance.
“Bebe is truly an iconic affordable luxury brand and one that we are honored to have the opportunity to introduce to women across Greater China in a variety of ways,” said Madam Celine Chen, chairwoman of Longgoal LLC.
“As style and design are among the top priorities for sophisticated woman in China, we are confident that Bebe’s bold design and contemporary fashion will appeal to the ever-changing lifestyle of the confident and sexy modern Chinese woman. With our local market expertise and bebe’s creative vision, we’re confident that we will build excitement for bebe’s trendy feminine designs and create demand for the brand across China.”
Bebe plans to locally design and develop up to 30 per cent of the product for China to create trendy fashion styles to reflect the local fashion and suit the “Bebe woman’s lifestyle” in China. In addition, the company plans further licensing agreements for handbags, shoes and intimates in the initial partnership phase.
Added Liyuan Woo, CFO of Bebe stores: “The Bebe brand has resonated well in key international markets as women continue to look for a distinctive ageless and head turning style which suits their lifestyle needs, and we look forward to doing the same in Greater China over the coming years.”
Bebe Stores Inc currently operates 164 Bebe retail stores, the on-line store, bebe.com, and 36 Bebe outlet stores in the US, Puerto Rico and Canada. It also distributes and sells Bebe branded product through licensees in about 20 countries.