Did you hear?... Andaska to open more stores

Andaska, the first and only outdoor specialty store in Paris, which opened in Spring 2001, is not resting on its laurels.
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Andaska, the first and only outdoor specialty store in Paris, which opened in Spring 2001, is not resting on its laurels. It has announced plans to open another six or seven outlets in the next two years, not counting other retail opportunities it may get involved in based on the takeover of Marks and Spencer France stores by Andaska shareholder Les Galleries Lafayette. The second Andaska location is expected to be in Strassbourg in April (13,000 square feet), with two more planned for September -- one in central Lyons (10,000 square feet), and one in the upscale Parisian shopping mall, Les Halles (16,000 square feet). The plans for another six or seven in two years is only a start. Andaska has said it aims for a total of about 25 in the next five years. SNEWS® View: Andaska management and public relations staff have rebuffed or ignored several attempts by SNEWS® since March 2001 to be profiled, something that leaves SNEWS® editors perplexed since who wouldn't want free exposure to the trade. We therefore wonder what it is that Andaska doesn't want to talk about or -- to be appropriately suspicious journalists -- what it is hiding. SNEWS® sources in Paris have told us they don't believe the Andaska concept is completely successful since it has an odd mix of apparel from high-end highly technical to chic lifestyle to inexpensive knockabout items. And the store is located in a new area of Paris that is very upscale and targets very urban and lifestyle-oriented customers in a trendy open-air "mall," so the question arises about the market for the truly technical items. Perhaps with one of its owners Les Galleries Lafayette buying up old Marks and Spencer sites, Andaska wants to wait to talk publicly. Meanwhile, they leave everybody guessing.

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