H&M is gearing up for some major international expansion in the coming year — online, that is. On Tuesday the Swedish mega-retailer announced its intention to launch e-commerce sites in Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Romania and Slovakia over the course of 2015.
This spate of openings comes a little more than a year after H&M got its U.S. e-commerce site up and running, a project that the company had delayed in the interest of opening more brick-and-mortar stores (to the tune of one per day on average). The brand currently operates online stores in 13 markets across Europe, China, the U.S. and the UK.
While it's good to see H&M taking its online expansion seriously — especially in light of putting off its U.S. launch and missing out on growth in that channel — opening physical stores remains a big focus. As of October 31, H&M had 3,437 stores operating worldwide, 356 more than it did the year prior. Just last week, the company announced that it will be opening 11 more locations in the U.S. in the next two years; 2015 will also mark its foray into India, Peru, South Africa and Taiwan.
As far as sales go, the retailer is doing well at the moment, delivering a nice 14 percent growth for October relative to the same time last year.