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Onwel Group to expand Skechers Footwear operations
Sep '08
SKECHERS USA Inc announced that it has expanded its operations in Hong Kong and Macau through a joint venture (known as SKECHERS Hong Kong Limited) with the Onwel Group, a leading fashion company in the region. The new joint venture in Hong Kong follows on the heels of SKECHERS China Limited, a joint venture with Luen Thai Enterprises established earlier this year.

SKECHERS Hong Kong has already started to deliver a full-range of men's, women's and children's SKECHERS footwear by establishing its own retail stores. It will also deliver SKECHERS products through a vast network of wholesale accounts starting from the Spring 2009 season. SKECHERS Hong Kong expects to improve its wholesale distribution with 200 new doors in the next two years and plans to triple its sales within three years.

“There is a tremendous opportunity for SKECHERS to grow in Hong Kong,” stated Michael Leung, CEO of SKECHERS Hong Kong. “SKECHERS is a fantastic, strong, global brand and this market is filled with brand-loving consumers who are ready for more of the stylish lifestyle footwear SKECHERS has to offer. We expect SKECHERS to experience new success in Hong Kong thanks to the full line of styles now available.”

“We're excited to be managing our operations and selling directly in Hong Kong thanks to this new joint venture and the dedicated and experienced team Michael Leung and his son Vincent have in place,” began Michael Greenberg, president of SKECHERS.

“We had a foothold in the region through a distribution partner, and now we have an opportunity to take our business in the Hong Kong region to the next level. A densely populated territory of approximately seven million, Hong Kong offers many opportunities for SKECHERS given its educated and savvy consumers, and growing open and dynamic economy.”

The first SKECHERS concept store in Hong Kong opened in Olympian City 2, West Kowloon, and a celebrity attended grand opening was held on August 16, 2008. This is the first of eight retail stores scheduled to open in 2008. Another 20 SKECHERS retail store locations are planned to open in the next two years.

As in the United States and around the world, the retail stores in Hong Kong should be profitable marketing vehicles. Stepping into a SKECHERS store in Hong Kong, consumers will be enveloped by the SKECHERS lifestyle – from images to a complete picture of SKECHERS' diverse products, making it a living catalog.

“The people of Hong Kong are avid, brand-conscious consumers,” began Vincent Leung, Senior Vice President of SKECHERS Hong Kong Limited. “The economy is thriving and given the opportunity to buy a great brand, Hong Kong people will take it. We experienced this enthusiasm with the opening of our first retail store in Olympian City 2 shopping mall last month.

Our expectation for sales was modest given this was a soft opening; but from opening day, sales have been exceptional -- an outstanding achievement especially given SKECHERS men's footwear was not available in Hong Kong until now. We believe this is a testament to the power of the global brand and the perceptive Hong Kong consumer.”

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