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I asked Pierre André Senizergues, the founder and CEO of Sole Tech, if he planned to get into the retail business.
Some background first: Sole Tech is still private and owned by Pierre. By comparison, DC is owned by Quiksilver, which has the financial resources and operational infrastructure to support DC's retail ambitions.
Here's what Pierre had to say:
"For the past several years we've had a handful of factory outlet stores called etnies:EXS, which we opened with the main goal of accommodating our retailers' need to refresh our product offerings on a consistent basis. This program has been incredibly effective for us and we plan to continue our drive forward in this arena.
"As far as stand alone retail stores, we have no plans for the coming year to launch any stores. With the challenging economy ahead of us, we feel it is more important to support our current retailers and provide product and programs that support their sell through and drive consumers to them.
"Market focus is our main goal for this coming year and we don't plan to take our eye off the ball with such a tremendous undertaking. In 2008, our retailers will need our focus more than ever as the market shifts, our priority has to be on them."