25 October 2018 – Eje Prime
The Spanish retail sector is welcoming a new international operator. After an arduous two-year search for premises on the prime high streets of Madrid and Barcelona, Urban Outfitters has found a space to launch its first Anthropologie store in the country. This debut comes four years after the US fashion group first opened its doors in the heart of the Catalan capital.
Anthropologie is soon going to open at number 27 Paseo de Gracia, in a store measuring almost 780 m2, distributed over two floors and owned by a family office. The chain is going to take over from the Italian firm Twinset Milano, which will shut down in the next few days. The rental operation has been brokered by the real estate consultancy firm Aretail.
Specifically, the ground floor of the future Anthropologie establishment has a surface area 365 m2, whilst the basement spans 414 m2. The company will share the street with luxury operators such as Fendi, Céline and Kenzo, as well as with major distribution groups such as Inditex, Fast Retailing, H&M and Mango, amongst others.
Urban Outfitters arrived in the Spanish market in May 2014, when it launched a subsidiary to manage its business in the country. That same year, the group opened the first store of its homonymous chain in the El Triangle shopping centre in Barcelona, where it replaced the home décor firm Habitat.
Two years after its first opening, the US company started to search for new locations both in the Catalan capital and in Madrid to open its first points of sale for Anthropologie and Free People, the other chain owned by Urban Outfitters. In the spring, rumours of the imminent closure of an operation were revived.
Anthropologie is the group’s largest division by turnover, ahead of Urban Outfitters itself. The female fashion chain closed 2017 with sales of $1.4 billion (€1.2 billion), up by 1.9%. That figure accounted for 39.4% of the group’s total revenues.
At the end of its last financial year (31 January 2018), the chain operated 226 stores in the USA, Canada and Europe. The company is immersed in an international expansion process, which includes an overseas growth strategy. For that reason, Anthropologie appointed Peter Ruis, the former director of Levi Strauss, as the senior director of the international business in July.
Original story: Eje Prime (by L. Molina and P. Riaño)
Translation: Carmel Drake