Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Industry News: Accelerating
Hot Topic Inc.’s Torrid division will open more than 20 plus-size fashion Torrid stores in 2012, many of them located in strip centers rather than traditional malls. The fleet of Torrid stores could grow to more than 335 locations. Hot Topic runs more than 634 Hot Topic stores and 146 Torrid stores, mostly in the continental US…City Sports has opened its 21st store, in downtown Silver Spring, Md. It is the retailer’s second location in the metro DC area to open in the past year. The store features an interactive electronics section that offers shoppers the use of in-store iPads to access information about products and the ability to wear-test headphones…A new retail concept, Wonder!, has opened it first location in Deerfield, Il. The 135,000 s/f space combines a broad selection of baby gear, furniture, bedding, apparel, and toys with an array of experiential elements, and features a half-acre interactive play area, 10 classrooms and a stage that will host special events, concerts and activities…1-800-FLOWERS.COM, Inc. announced the signing of a 45-store franchise development agreement for its Fannie May Fine Chocolates division with GB Chocolates, LLC. GB Chocolates will open a minimum of 45 new Fannie May franchise stores beginning in December 2011. All stores under the agreement are required to be opened and operating by year-end 2014. GB Chocolates has also acquired 17 existing Fannie May stores from the Company…P.F. Chang’s China Bistro Inc. plans to open an even more limited-service and pared-down-menu version of its fast-casual Pei Wei Asian Diner in Phoenix next April, executives said Friday. Called Pei Wei Asian Market, the new test restaurant will take over an existing Diner unit in Phoenix, said K.C. Moylan, president of the 173-unit Asian Diner division. The division is also looking for three to five additional locations around the country...Dollar General Corp. will open 40 new Dollar General Markets, its expanded grocery concept, in 2012, the first new DG Markets since 2007. The company operates 62 Dollar General Markets…J.C. Penney Co Inc bought a stake in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc and will build mini-stores under that brand. Martha Stewart store-in-stores will open at Penney in February 2013. ..Wingstop, the national chicken wing chain, opened its 500th restaurant this month, in Brooklyn, NY. Wingstop was founded in 1994 and began franchising in 1997.