GREGORY J. GILLIGAN
TIMES-DISPATCH COLUMNIST Jul 24, 2006
Contact Gregory J. Gilligan at (804) 649-6379 or ggilligan @timesdispatch.com
Dick Hayne opened a small shop in 1970 selling funky and eclectic clothes and household products. That shop on the University of Pennsylvania campus, called Free People, focused on items for the urban hipster. Hayne took that concept, changed the name to Urban Outfittersand built it into a growing chain. The retailer now operates more than 94 stores in the U.S., Canada, and Europe, including its latest store that opened recently in the Short Pump Town Center in Henrico County.
"Our stores offer a unique and eclectic mix of fashion merchandise in a lifestyle-sensitive store environment," spokesman Kevin Lyons said.
Urban Outfitters focuses on young women's and men's apparel, accessories and footwear. The brands include 7 for all Mankind, Lacoste, and Diesel.
Some of the chain's t-shirts poke fun at various social stereotypes or prejudices.
Urban Outfitters also sells items for the young person's apartment, such as housewares, some furniture, books and gifts.
"Unlike many retail chains, we are only interested in catering to 18- to 26-year-old males and females," Lyons said.
Urban Outfitters Inc. has since created two other brands: Anthropologie, which targets women ages 30 to 45; and Free People, for women in their late 20s.
Circuit City will start carrying higher-end audio/video components and high-definition televisions.
The new brands, two of which are being carried for the first time by Circuit City, are part of the chain's effort to enhance its home entertainment section.
The brands are:
Boston Acoustics, which makes speakers and audio products. The chain will carry its home speakers, home-theater speaker packages and tabletop radios.
Denon Electronics, a maker of home entertainment components. Circuit City will sell its stereo receivers, DVD players and home theater systems.
Mitsubishi Digital Electronics America Inc., which makes high-definition televisions.
New Ukrop's planned
Ukrop's Super Markets Inc. plans to open three new stores in the next 12 months:
In Williamsburg, at the Williamsburg Marketcenter on Mooretown Road near state Route 199. It will open in October and be the chain's second location in Williamsburg.
In Roanoke, in the planned Ivy Market shopping center. The store, the chain's first in Roanoke, should open early next year. It was slated to open this year.
"It is taking longer," said Robert S. Ukrop, the chain's president and chief executive officer. "It's a complicated site."
In western Henrico County on Nuckols Road near the Twin Hickory development. That would open in summer 2007.
No bus trip
The bus trip that Nordstrom had planned from Charlottesville and Fredericksburg to the chain's store at Short Pump Town Center never happened.
The reason: lack of interest.
Only four people signed up for the trips, which were planned for July 15 and July 22, store manager Megan Becker said.
Customers told her they wanted to come on their own schedule and in their own car.
Contact staff writer Gregory J. Gilligan at email@example.com or (804) 649-6379.