Monday, November 14, 2011

Yeoju Premium Outlets to double in size

Participants pose after signing a memorandum of understanding to double the size of Yeoju premium outlets, owned by Shinsegae Chelsea, in Korea at the premium outlet mall in Las Vegas, Sunday. From left are Shinsegae Chelsea CEO Choi Wu-yeol; John Klein, head of premium outlets centers of Simon Property Group; Gyeonggi Governor Kim Moon-soo; Mayor Kim Chun-seok of Yeoju County; and Huh In-chul, vice president of strategy planning office of Shinsegae Group. / Courtesy of Shinsegae Group
By Jung Sung-ki - The Korea Times

Shinsegae Chelsea, an affiliate of retail giant Shinsegae Group, plans to double the size of its premium outlet mall in Yeoju, Gyeonggi Province, by 2014, the company announced Monday.

The plan is part of efforts to “meet the consumer needs” by diversifying the fashion brands to be sold there to draw more visitors and boost the regional economy, it said in a news release. 

Under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by Shinsegae Chelsea ― a 50-50 joint venture between Shinsegae and U.S.-based Simon Property Group ― about $67 million will be invested in expanding the site of Yeoju Premium Outlets to 462,700 square meters from the current 264,400 square meters, the release said. 

The renovated mall will have 48,900 square meters of retail space compared to the current 25,800 square meters, it said, while the number of brands is to increase from the current 140 to 250. 

“Annual sales have been on a steady increase, and the expansion of the mall is expected to lift sales further,” Choi Kyung-hee, a spokeswoman of Shinsegae Chelsea, told The Korea Times, declining to elaborate the sales figures. 

The expansion of the U.S.-style luxury mall is forecast to create about 2,000 jobs and draw approximately 6 million domestic and foreign visitors annually, she said. Last year, about 4 million customers visited the mall. 

To bolster the regional economy, principal agricultural products of Yeoju, such as rice, sweet potatoes and peanuts, are to be sold in the space of 1,650 square meters. 

“Since its opening in 2007, Yeoju Premium Outlets has successfully laid the groundwork for a family-based shopping culture while combining shopping and tourism, not just a fashion outlet mall,” Shinsegae Chelsea CEO Choi Wu-yeol said after the signing ceremony in Las Vegas on Sunday. “I hope the outlet mall is further developed into an Asian shopping landmark beyond a shopping mall in the far suburbs.” 

Gyeonggi Governor Kim Moon-soo said, “Yeoju Premium Outlets helped put Yeoju on the map and with an increasing number of visitors, the regional economy has expanded substantially.” 

In March, Shinsegae Chelsea opened its second Korea-based premium outlet mall in Paju, north of Seoul. The mall of 31,000 square meters has 165 stores and offers more diverse brands than in Yeoju.

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