Hermès is betting that China will come back in fashion.
Paris-based Hermès International is set on Monday to formally open a lavish four-story outlet in a historical government building in Shanghai’s former French concession. It also plans to open an additional two stores in Beijing and China’s southwestern city of Chengdu this year and one or two more next year, said Florian Craen, executive vice president of sales and distribution for Hermès. Currently it has 21 stores in China.
In the coming month, Hermès will also open a new outlet in Shanghai for fledgling Shang Xia Chinese brand, which makes goods like hand-felted Mongolian-cashmere coats and handmade Chinese tea sets. The store, the brand’s largest yet, would join two existing stores in China and one in Paris.
The modest expansion comes at a time of tempered taste for luxury in China. Luxury sales growth in the country is expected to reach 2% this year, according to projections from U.S. consulting firm Bain & Co. That is down from 20% growth rates three years ago, before economic growth slowed and Beijing cracked down on corruption and a widespread culture of giving officials pricey gifts.
Read more at The Wall Street Journal.