Gap goes Down Under

The Gap is going Down Under. The all-American brand announced a franchise agreement to bring the Gap label to Australia, where to date the product has not been available. The franchise business is a key part of Gap Inc.’s global business strategy, which sees in place 24 franchise agreements in four continents.

Gap Inc. has signed a franchise agreement with Brand Republic Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Busby Holdings Australia Pty Ltd, for exclusive rights to operate Gap brand stores in Australia.

“With Australia, we’re extending our international presence to a whole new continent,” said Stefan Laban, vice president of Strategic Alliances for Gap Inc. “The country has a strong retail sector and an underserved market of consumers who appreciate the casual, American style that Gap represents. We’re confident that we have the right partner to help us bring Gap to consumers in Australia, given their success bringing other international brands to the Australian marketplace.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Brand Republic will purchase merchandise from Gap and must adhere to the company’s quality standards.

The first Gap store is expected to open in the popular Chadstone Mall in Melbourne, Australia in the fall of 2010. More than 130 franchise stores are currently open in 20 countries, spanning Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.

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