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Converse, one of the largest manufacturers of athletic footwear in the United States, has established an extensive network of sales locations in over 90 countries worldwide. The company wants to tap the enormous market potential of China, where it has close to 1,000 sales points. Although Converse operates under a licensing agreement in the country with Yucheng (Kunshan) Sport Products Co Ltd since 2002, there is a need to revitalise and re-strategise the brand.
In early 2007, Converse formulated an ambitious business plan to re-brand all its China stores. Later that year, Converse devised an aggressive plan, dubbed the ‘Converse Century’, aimed at re-branding over 2,000 stores in China by 2009 in three phases. As a strategic partner, Jones Lang LaSalle entered the ‘race’ to make the plan a reality.
Appointed as project management consultant for this Converse retail roll-out, we advised and managed the project’s first two phases, which involved working with Converse to design and build five prototype stores as platform and testing ground for the subsequent large-scale roll-out, and then delivering 13 stores across Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou. For the Phase III roll-out of another 200 stores, Jones Lang LaSalle is finalising negotiations to continue our strategic partnership, which will carry Converse through its entire roll-out plan across China.
Helping Converse reduce its risks and having maximised our China expertise made this partnership a true success story.