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NEWS UPDATES 11 October 2010

Jeans company opens Cambodia outlet

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American jeans company Levi's has opened its first Cambodian outlet.

Company officials have said its primary competition will initially come from the domestic black market.

The US-based company Levi Strauss & Co does produce clothing in Cambodia. These Cambodian-produced wares are now exported to foreign markets.

It's acknowledged that the Levi's brand's local production may lead to genuine products "falling off the back of a truck" and ending up for sale on local markets, which could then compete with sales from the genuine store.

However, he said domestic demand for legitimate brand-name clothing was maturing, pointing to fashion names such as Mango opening outlets in Phnom Penh.

He said counterfeit Levi's products were also available in local markets, but that experience from Thailand showed customers were interested in spending extra money for genuine goods. "There's always a consumer who wants a real, authentic product," he said.

Levi's Cambodia Manager Chariya Preap said the firm's focus would be on an upper-middle class demographic, as its pricing was higher than most other retailers presently operating in Phnom Penh.

The firm is keeping its eye on sales at its first store, and testing products to see which product lines resonate with Cambodia's consumers. Three more Cambodian stores will open during 2011.

Meanwhile, Levi Strauss & Company has announced plans to add another 50 stores in China, Singapore, and South Korea under its dENiZEN brand.

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