BALR. opens first flagship store in Germany
The fashion and lifestyle label BALR. will open its first physical flagship store in Germany at Centro Oberhausen in autumn 2019. On 134 square meters, BALR. offers contemporary fashion collections, shoes and accessories for men and women inspired by trendsetters from professional sports. Center operator Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW) thus once again welcomes a brand in its portfolio that is making its way from the online sector into the stationary retail sector.
BALR. was founded in 2013 by the Dutch professional football player Demy de Zeeuw, among others, with the aim of making the characteristic lifestyle of well-known sports stars accessible to a broad public. In addition to football, the brand also focuses on prominent basketball players, American football players and entertainers.
In the industry, BALR. is known as a Digitally Native Vertical Brand – a brand that bases its success primarily on the direct sale and marketing of its products via its own online channels. The label has an Instagram community of 1.2 million users. The fashion collections are also marketed via a worldwide network of 1,500 high-profile influencers who provide additional social media content. After the label has already opened stores in Amsterdam and Utrecht, BALR. is now intensifying its German stationary retail business with the new boutique at Centro.
Direct brand experiences in the physical store
“We are very pleased that with BALR. we were once again able to inspire an e-commerce brand for one of our centers,” says Paul-Eric Perchaud, Director of Operations Germany at Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield Germany. “The contract shows our commitment to be the first point of contact for brands that want to connect their digital channels to a physical store and create even more direct brand experiences. Visitors of Centro can look forward to an absolute highlight.”
Pascal Brouwer, International Retail Director of BALR. adds: “With the store in Centro, we are creating a new meeting place for the BALR. community outside the digital channels. In this way, we are able to enrich the identity of BALR. with a further facet and make the brand experience a tangible one. We are convinced that with Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield we have found the ideal partner for this step”.
Unibail-Rodamco-Westield most recently presented more and more new leasing partners, who have their roots in online range: the watch brand Daniel Wellington, for example, operates a store in Centro, while the optician Mister Spex has opened its own stores in Ruhr Park in Bochum as well as in Centro. The well-known web video producer and influencer Dagi Bee also presented her fashion and makeup products in July and August 2019 on her own pop-up area in Ruhr Park.
Flagship shopping destination in the Ruhr area: Centro in Oberhausen
With a total area of 242,000 square metres, Centro in Oberhausen is the largest shopping and experience area in Germany. Around 250 shops, thereof 47 gastronomy concepts, a multifunctional arena with 12,500 seats, the Legoland® Discovery Centre and a cinema are located on the site. The entire area attracts more than 20 million visitors every year. The direct surroundings in the Neue Mitte district also offer a theatre, a trampoline park, an aquarium as well as a fun pool and the well-known Oberhausen exhibition centre Gasometer. Direct motorway connections as well as tram and bus stops directly in front of the door provide Centro with optimal connections to the regional and supra-regional infrastructure.