After 20 years in Latin America, Skechers is accelerating expansion by transitioning 21 of its stores into subsidiary-owned and operated locations. The footwear retailer is also eyeing new locations and plans to expand its distribution in the region.
The new subsidiary, Skechers Latin America LLC, will oversee more than 30 countries in Latin America, Footwear News reported. The group includes four key markets: Panama, Peru, Colombia and Costa Rica.
"Skechers' strategic business model has established a strong framework for our brand to grow in many parts of the world—and we see Latin America as the next natural destination for us to employ this vision," said David Weinberg, COO and CFO of Skechers, in a release. "Latin America and its key markets remain an important part of our international business, especially given our current growth in the Americas—including the United States, Canada, Brazil and Mexico."
Skechers' international wholesale business has grown more than 60 percent in the second quarter of 2015; therefore, the company sees the opportunity to drive more Latin American business.
The subsidiary will be based in Panama City and will oversee the company's regional showrooms in Panama, Peru, Colombia and Costa Rica. Additional regions under the new subsidiary include the Caribbean, Ecuador, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua.
Skechers is not the only retailer expanding in Latin America. Last week Starbucks (NYSE:SBUX) entered its 15th Latin American market with the opening of a flagship store in Panama.
Skechers expanded its U.S. presence through a unique partnership with Meijer earlier this year. The shoe brand opened a concept shop, measuring 804 sq. ft., making it the largest in-store Skechers shop within another U.S. retailer's store.
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