Tiffany & Co. said Wednesday that it plans a "significant increase" in the number of TIFFANY & CO. stores it plans to open in the U.S. To make this happen, the luxury jeweler developed a new, smaller-format store that will occupy approximately 2,000 square feet and offer jewelry designs with the exception of engagement jewelry. It has the working name TIFFANY & CO. COLLECTIONS and the first store is expected to open in 2008.
"The addition of this new format affords us with the opportunity to ultimately operate as many as 170 stores in the U.S.," said Michael J. Kowalski, Tiffany chairman and chief executive officer. "This new format has the potential to significantly accelerate U.S. sales growth over the medium- to long-term and enhance profitability due to a merchandise mix weighted with higher-margin products."
Kowalski said the company still plans to open five to seven traditional TIFFANY & CO. stores per year, averaging about 5,000 square feet. Tiffany currently operates 68 TIFFANY & CO. stores in the U.S.
Beth O. Canavan, Tiffany executive vice president, said the new stores will cater to the self-purchase customer theroughout the U.S.
"The location opportunities in existing and new markets are vast and geographically broad-based and add enormous sales potential and longevity to our store expansion strategy," Canavan said.
After opening the first store in 2008, Canavan said the company plans to open eight to 12 stores per year.