London — Gap Inc. plans to open approximately 190 stores worldwide in the year ahead, as well as the first Old Navy stores outside of North America by the end of 2012.
London — As part of Gap Inc.’s global growth strategy, the company plans to combine its international operations into one division, headquartered in London. Led by Stephen Sunnucks, the international division will bring together Gap’s company-operated and franchise stores across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, Asia Pacific and South America.
For the past 5 years, Sunnucks, a 30-year retail veteran, has successfully guided the growth of Gap and Banana Republic in Europe as well as overseen the company’s rapidly-expanding franchise operations. Now his responsibilities have been expanded to lead the company’s brands outside North America. Currently, this amounts to about 530 stores across 30 countries, including eight of the world’s top 10 apparel retail markets.
In addition, John Ermatinger, currently president of Gap Inc.’s Asia Pacific Region, will take on a new role establishing Old Navy International. Ermatinger will begin the new role in June, with the objective of expanding Old Navy outside of North America for the first time, with a new store in Japan by the end of 2012.
In late 2010, the company opened its first Gap and Banana Republic flagship stores in Italy, and its first Gap stores and an online retail site in China. The new stores in Milan and China have been among the company’s top 10 percent performing stores in the world since their openings. In the year ahead, the company plans to open about 190 stores worldwide, including about 10 stores each in China and Italy. It plans to double the number of franchise stores to 400 by 2015.
Gap Inc. is a leading global specialty retailer under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, and Athleta brands. Fiscal year 2010 net sales were $14.7 billion. Gap Inc. products are available for purchase in over 90 countries worldwide through about 3,100 company-operated stores, about 180 franchise stores, and e-commerce sites. For more information, please visit www.gapinc.com.