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2009 April 21

Esprit's Magical Meetings

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(NEW YORK) Esprit’s hippie roots go back more than 40 years, when hitchhiker Doug Tompkins was picked up in a VW bug in San Francisco. Six months later, driver Susie became his wife. Today, the Esprit Group operates over 774 directly managed stores worldwide, offering 12 established product lines, from women’s, men’s, and children's wear to shoes, accessories, and even a Red Earth cosmetics brand. With Ronald Van der Vis slated to replace Heinz Kroger as Esprit Holding Ltd.’s CEO this coming June, it seems that, recession or no, the company is continuing to expand. In February, the brand said their profits had decreased 13.4% in the first half of the year, though they experienced a 2.9% increase in sales; regardless, the number of the company’s employees and the number of stores has grown steadily in the last several years.

Earlier this month, the company celebrated its return to the West Coast by opening a store on Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade (fêted with a star-studded bash hosted by Nicole Richie), and now Esprit wants to ask paired-up customers how they met. Married duos, significant others or even a team of best friends are invited to log onto www.esprit.com/howwemet before April 23 to tell their story, upload a photo and then pass it along to their friends so they can vote. The winners will be gifted a trip for two to an Esprit Flagship store in Paris, Barcelona or Berlin, a $500 shopping spree and $500 in cash.
EMILY GYBEN




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