It sounds like Karl Lagerfeld will be killing two birds with one stone when he heads to Dubai next month for Chanel's Metiers D'Arts show. He'll also be opening two shop-in-shops and a standalone store for his namesake label in the city, with many more of those to come.
According to WWD, Karl Lagerfeld has inked a deal with a Dubai-based retail distribution company to open 10 Karl Lagerfeld concept stores and 15 shops-in-shop by 2018. (A spokesperson for Karl Lagerfeld did not immediately respond to our request to confirm the report.) The company, Chalhoub Group, has already partnered with everyone from Dior to Marc Jacobs to Louis Vuitton to build retail networks in the region.
The brand isn't entering the Middle East blind: The trade reports that Middle Easterners rank among Karl Lagerfeld's top four international customer bases, and that the brand plans to focus on sales of handbags in the region, like its Chanel-esque "Kuilted" range. (Seems Lagerfeld is trying to take the "K" back from those pesky Kardashians.)
Clearly, this is part of the "aggressive growth strategy" Karl President Pier Paolo Righi mentioned when it was announced earlier this month that PVH had become a minority shareholder in the brand. On top of the Dubai rollout, the brand is reportedly looking at opening more stores in China, Berlin and throughout Europe, and Righi says its retail network could potentially grow to a total of 100 locations.