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Kipling to Expand in U.S., Asia

Instrumental to its growth is its new store look, which the brand is slowly beginning to roll out.

NO MONKEY BUSINESS: Kipling, the accessories brand known for its nylon backpacks and monkey key chains, is broadening its reach in Asia and the U.S. over the next five years.


Originally a Belgian brand, Kipling was bought by VF Corp. in 2005, and since then, it has more than tripled its business, Julie Dimperio, Kipling North America president told WWD.


Instrumental to its growth is its new store look, which the brand is slowly beginning to rollout. Kipling tested the store in its London shop on Brompton Road, and most recently at the Ala Moana mall in Honolulu.


In addition to a new store design, the stores integrate all of Kipling’s merchandise categories, including stationary, jewelry, small leather goods and bags.


“It’s been a homerun,” Dimperio said, adding that the brand will enter new markets such as New York, Las Vegas and Southern California.


“The brand is growing at 20 plus percent rate year-over-year,” she noted but declined to provide numbers. “It’s a cool brand with a lot of room to grow.”