American Eagle Outfitters, one of the biggest fashion retailers in the US, has confirmed that it is going to open its first stores in the UK at Westfield’s London shopping centres and Bluewater in Kent.
Simon Nankervis, executive vice-president for American Eagle, said there is “a tremendous global appetite” for the American Eagle brand and its lingerie brand aerie.
American Eagle, which is advised in the UK by property agent Harper Dennis Hobbs, will be the latest in a line of US fashion chains to cross the Atlantic.
Hollister, Urban Outfitters, Forever 21 and J Crew have all opened stores in the UK, although they have enjoyed mixed success.
American Eagle has more than 1,000 stores in the US and targets 15 to 25-year-olds with affordable fashion.
The fashion chain will open at Westfield London, Westfield Stratford City and Bluewater this autumn.
Mr Nankervis added: “We are excited to officially announce the upcoming launch of the American Eagle Outfitters and aerie brands in the United Kingdom.
“We see a tremendous global appetite for the American Eagle Outfitters and aerie brands and believe that having a presence in Westfield’s iconic London centers anchoring east and west London, will provide great exposure for us in this significant new market.”
The retailer has been hugely successful in the US as a youth fashion chain but faces competition in the UK from European heavyweights such as Zara and H&M as well as UK chain Topshop.
Bill Giouroukos, director operations at Westfield, said: “With more than 30 American Eagle Outfitters stores already in many of our US centres including San Francisco, Century City and Garden State Plaza, we are honoured the company has chosen to open two of its first UK stores in Westfield centres.”
Westfield provide the group access to more than 66 million shoppers a year in the heart of the UK market, while Bluewater serves one of the largest and most affluent parts of Britain and has more than 28 million visitors a year.