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Ports 1961 Ramping Up European Presence

Eddie Parsons, senior director of client services, has relocated to the brand’s 8,000-square-foot Paris flagship from New York.

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OUR MAN IN PARIS: As part of Ports 1961’s plans to build international sales, Eddie Parsons, senior director of client services, has relocated to Paris from New York. Reached at the brand’s 8,000-square-foot flagship at 251 Rue St-Honore in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, he said the company is eyeing similar locations in London and Milan. The plan is to showcase the women’s and men’s collections as well as Ports 1961’s expanding accessories division. For the second consecutive season, creative director Fiona Cibani will stage Ports 1961’s runway show in Milan. (It is set for Feb. 21.)

The evening collection has made the Paris shop a destination for women and men from different cities around the world, according to Parsons. In recent months, the label’s Los Angeles, Toronto and Vancouver stores were shuttered to focus on major markets. Down-the-road the company expects to return to the three cities it left in better locations — i.e. on Rodeo Drive instead of Melrose, Parsons said.

Another area of opportunity for the label is outlet stores. With its Livermore, Calif. location up-and-running, the company plans to unveil a 3,000-square-foot one near Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport in May or June. Others are planned for Toronto and Vancouver next year.

The American-born Parsons will still be jetting back to the U.S. for the occasional trunk show and blogging on a regular basis for The Huffington Post.