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Jewelry retailer Claire's goes to Spain

Jul '05
Leading international specialty jewellery retailer Claire's Stores Inc announced opening of its first store in Spain and first leases in Holland. This is part of a broader initiative to expand the Claire's brand to additional countries in Europe.

The Company reported earlier this year that during Fiscal 2006 it intended to open stores in two to three new European countries. The Company currently operates stores in the United Kingdom and Ireland, France, Switzerland, Austria and Germany, in addition to its large North American presence.

Claire's first entered the United Kingdom in 1996 and continental Europe in 1998 when it completed an acquisition of 53 stores throughout Switzerland, Austria and Germany. Today's store openings in Spain mark the first time the Company has commenced operations in a country through organic growth.

Two stores were opened yesterday, each in Madrid. They are located at Calle Narvaez 22 and Calle Bravo Murillo 101. Two additional stores are scheduled to open later this month as follows:

July 22 Centro Commercial Principe Pio, Madrid

July 29 Calle Creu Coberta, 122, Barcelona

The average square footage of the new stores is comparable to that in our other European locations. Each of the stores in Spain will be supplied from the Company's Austrian warehouse and, like our other stores in Europe, will carry approximately 7,500 SKU's.

Lease negotiations are currently underway for additional stores to be opened in Spain in the latter half of this fiscal year or Fiscal 2007. Three leases have also been signed for stores in Holland, with opening dates planned for later this year. The three stores are located in the cities of Amsterdam, Leiden and Nijmegen.

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