French department store chain Galeries Lafayette and Hong Kong-based fashion retailer IT have entered into a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)  for the development of department stores under the Galeries Lafayette name in the People's Republic of China (PRC).

"I am convinced that adding our different know-how in retailing will be a success in establishing a new type of department store in the PRC," said Philippe Houzé, president of the management board of Galeries Lafayette group.

The MoU makes provision for a nine-month exclusivity period during which the parties will identify an appropriate location for the development of the first department store, which is likely to be located in Beijing or Macau.

The two parties will then enter into a joint venture, in which IT will have a majority shareholding, and set-up, manage and operate the first and possibly other department stores in the PRC.

By Stuart Todd.