Designer Tom Ford to open isle store
Luxury designer Tom Ford has set his eyes on Hawaii as part of an aggressive global expansion plan.
The designer, formerly Gucci Group's creative director, plans to open four stores in the next three years -- in Milan, London, Los Angeles and Hawaii.
The company is in the preliminary stages of looking for a location for its first store in the islands, sch-eduled to op-en in 2010, said spokeswoman Natalie Rawling.
Tom Ford International also has franchise agreements with Lane Crawford Joyce Group to open stores in multiple cities in Europe, South America, Asia and the Middle East beginning next spring.
His goal is to create more than 100 free-standing retail stores worldwide over the next 10 years and 87 franchised operations.
Ford, who charges $3,000 for an off-the-rack suit and $5,000 for a made-to-measure garment, opened his first store on New York's Madison Avenue in April.
He aims to capitalize on rising global demand for luxury goods that has swelled the industry's annual revenue to about $214 billion, according to consulting firm Bain & Co.
"We have now laid the foundation necessary to become a true global luxury brand," Ford, who is president and chief executive officer of his eponymous com- pany, said in a statement.
Ford's strategy is to run a tighter distribution than other luxury competitors and aggressively expand to build a strong global presence.
The designer also said he plans to start distributing his men's apparel through department stores such as luxury retailers Neiman Marcus Group Inc. in the U.S. and Harrods in London.
His next store will open in Milan next year and franchised stores will open in Moscow, Hong Kong, Dubai and other foreign cities.
Ford launched his brand in 2005 after leaving Gucci Group and signing a licensing deal with Estee Lauder to create Tom Ford Beauty, developing fragrance and beauty products.
Ford started working at Gucci in 1990 as a designer and left the company in April 2004 along with then-CEO Domenico de Sole after a decade as creative director.
Star-Bulletin reporter Kristen Consillio and Bloomberg News service contributed to this report.