Danish footwear and accessory brand ECCO will launch its first ‘prime concept’ store in North America this spring, which will be the third of its kind in the world. The company is also confirmed to be opening at least three other Canadian stores, including a replacement location that will become the country’s largest.
ECCO’s ‘prime concept’ store format features interiors that reference the heritage of the brand, including wall treatments profiling shoe styles and other historical elements. Premium flooring is featured throughout, and a selection of product is featured that is unavailable in most locations. There are currently two ‘prime concept’ ECCO stores in the world — in Berlin and Hamburg, Germany, according to ECCO Canada president Jordan Searle.
North America’s first ECCO ‘prime concept’ will open in May of this year at Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre. The 1,550 square foot store will replace Jean Machine in a central area of the mall, as per the floor plan below. The new Yorkdale ECCO will replace an existing location in the mall, which is closer to Nordstrom and across from the recently opened Saint Laurent.
The new Yorkdale store will also feature a separate leather goods and accessories shop-in-store — the second of its kind in Canada, following the opening of an ECCO accessory store in Vancouver last year.
ECCO is also in the process of relocating its existing downtown Montreal store at 1329 Ste-Catherine Street West to a larger space within the same building. The new location will measure about 1,700 square feet, according to Mr. Searle, making it the company’s largest unit in Canada when it opens. The new Montreal flagship will also feature a dedicated leather goods and accessory shop-in-store.
In 2018, as well, ECCO will open two more Canadian stores. An Edmonton store will open at the Premium Outlet Collection at Edmonton International Airport in the spring of 2018, and a location at Quebec City’s Galeries de la Capitale will also open next year.
ECCO currently has 31 stores in Canada, after the recent opening of a store at West Edmonton Mall. Mr. Searle revealed that the company plans to eventually operate about 45 Canadian stores as it continues to open a handful of locations each year in this country.
Founded in Denmark in 1963, ECCO is unique in how it manages every aspect of the value chain from tanneries and shoe manufacturing to wholesale and retail activities. ECCO’s products are sold in 88 countries from over 2,000 ECCO shops and more than 14,000 sales points. The company is doing exceptionally well — in 2016, it saw the number of shoes sold increased by 5% over the year prior, with currency-adjusted sales through brick-and-mortar boutiques increase 10%, and online sales growth of 46%. ECCO opened about 100 new concept shops (including partner stores) last year.