German sportswear-maker Puma SE has signed a lease deal to open a flagship store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue shopping corridor, creating a marquee location that will be the first of its kind for the company in North America.
Puma is taking a three-level, 24,000 square-foot space at 609 Fifth Ave. at 49th Street, according to SL Green Realty Corp. , the real-estate investment trust that owns the building. The real-estate investment trust has launched a redevelopment that will include double-height storefronts that wrap around the building.
Puma Chief Executive Björn Gulden described the location as iconic, situated on one of the most prestigious streets in the world. While Puma has stores in the U.S. and Canada, none has the breadth of the company’s product categories this location will showcase, said Russ Kahn, senior vice president of retail for Puma North America.
Puma joins other sportswear companies such as Nike Inc., Under Armour Inc. and AdidasAG , which have leased space along the Fifth Avenue shopping corridor. The district hasn’t been immune to the effects of online retail growth, which has caused turmoil among traditional bricks-and-mortar retailers in the past few years.
In the first quarter of the year, the average asking rent on the lower stretch of Fifth Avenue from 42nd to 49th streets, which encompasses 609 Fifth Ave., declined 5.4%, to $1,060 a square foot, compared with the same quarter last year, according to real estate services firm CBRE Group Inc. Asking rent on the stretch of Fifth Avenue from 49th to 59th streets dipped 0.5%, to $3,700 a square foot.