Fashion chain Gap is going to unify its four overseas divisions in one London-based international division. Leading the new entity is Stephan Sunnucks, now director of Gap Europe.
Overseas push, American decline
The new operation fits in Gap's strategy to focus on its international presence, following successful expansions in China and Italy last year. In the US itself, Gap will close over 200 stores.
CEO Glenn Murphy said that the merger of the four divisions will allow Gap to “leverage resources, operate consistently, and grow the business at an accelerated rate”.
"Our distinctively American aesthetic has resonated very well, everywhere from Milan to Shanghai to Sydney," Sunnucks said, still recognising the fact that Gap needs to adapt to every local market in order to acquire as big a part as is possible of the 1.4 trillion dollar that is spent on clothing worldwide.
Old Navy sets sail to Japan
Gap also announced the further expansion of Old Navy, named after a Parisian café. The 17 year old lower-priced brand will open its first Japanese store in 2012. John Ermatinger, until now director of Gap Asia, will be Old Navy's captain in that conquest.