Under the agreements, F J Benjamin
will hold exclusive rights to operate Gap
and Banana Republic
branded apparel and accessories stores in Singapore and will hold exclusive rights to distribute Gap and Banana Republic products in Malaysia.Gap Inc.'s
subsidiary's franchise agreement with F J Benjamin
for Singapore and distribution agreement for Malaysia, which the company expects to convert to a franchise agreement after regulatory approval, demonstrate the company's first step toward expanding the Gap
and Banana Republic brands via international franchises.
...F J Benjamin
has significant expertise in this market and we're delighted to enter this collaboration with them to bring Gap's fresh, casual, American
style and Banana Republic's affordable luxury to fashion-savvy customers."F J Benjamin plans to open about 30 stores in Singapore and Malaysia by 2010, opening the first Gap store in the fall of 2006 and the first Banana Republic store in 2007.Mr. Frank Benjamin, Chairman and CEO of F J Benjamin, commented, "We are excited to be working with Gap Inc.Gap
and Banana Republic
are global fashion icons and we intend to aggressively launch and grow these brands in Singapore and Malaysia."Gap Inc.
will leverage F J Benjamin's
retail expertise and will provide access to Gap and Banana Republic's
world-renowned clothing and accessories.F J Benjamin
will purchase merchandise from Gap Inc.
or suppliers designated by Gap Inc.
and must adhere to Gap Inc.'s
quality standards to preserve the reputation of the Gap
and Banana Republic brands.
Forward-Looking Statements This press release contains forward-looking statements within the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.All statements other than those that are purely historical are forward-looking statements.Words such as "expect," "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "intend," "plan," and similar expressions also identify forward-looking statements.Forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements regarding the company's expectation that its distribution agreement for Malaysia will be converted into a franchise agreement after regulatory approval, the company's intention to expand the Gap
and Banana Republic brands via international franchising, FJ Benjamin's intention to aggressively grow the Gap
and Banana Republic brands in Singapore and Malaysia and the timing and number of stores that are expected to open.Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements.These factors include, without limitation, the following: the risk that F J Benjamin will be unable to successfully open, operate and grow the number of Gap and Banana Republic branded apparel and accessories stores in Singapore and Malaysia, which the company may have a limited ability to control; the risk that the company will be unable to convert the Malaysian distribution agreement to a franchise agreement, which could limit the company's ability to control FJ Benjamin's operation of the business in Malaysia; the risk that the company will be unsuccessful in gauging fashion trends and changing consumer preferences; the highly competitive nature of the apparel and accessories markets internationally and the dependence of these markets on consumer spending patterns, which are influenced by numerous other factors; and the risk that trade matters, events causing disruptions in product shipments from China and other foreign countries, or IT systems changes may disrupt the company's supp