Modell’s plans five more NYC stores this year

March 19, 2012 09:00AM

Fresh off opening three metro-area stores this month, sporting good retailer Modell’s is planning to add five New York City stores this year, Crain’s reported, as the family-owned store tries to keep its expanding rivals at bay.

“We want to protect our turf from anyone else coming in,” said Modell’s CEO Mitchell Model. “We’re just going to surround them like locusts.”

As The Real Deal reported, national chain Dick’s is scouring for space in the city. Crain’s said it is nearing a deal at 3 Columbus Circle. Further, REI opened its first Manhattan store last year in the Puck Building and JackRabbit, a running store, opened its fourth city store a few months ago. And the city already has local mainstay Paragon Sports, and national chains Sports Authority and Foot Locker competing with Modell’s.

Now, Modell’s is searching for space in Soho and Union Square, where Paragon, Foot Locker and JackRabbit already have outposts. While the store will keep with its strategy of renting smaller ground floor space and putting most of its footprint on cheaper basement or second-floor square-footage, Modell’s is making a small change to its sales strategy in an effort to focus on women, who currently comprise 70 percent of the chain’s shoppers. [Crain’s]