Ecko Enterprises is planning to open 150 full-price retail stores across the U.S. by the end of 2009, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Mr. Ecko says he understands the risks. “If you want to grow a business in American malls…it’s more than just being able to have the money for the key,” he says. “There’s theater to it. [Customers] want to feel something when they walk into a store. It’s not enough to say, ‘We’ve got a great sense of style.”‘
“I’m a designer, right? But because I’ve kind of encompassed this whole lifestyle attitude,” Mr. Ecko says, “I’m kind of given license to explore other businesses that are more contemporary but still embody the lifestyle values. And this isn’t necessarily clothing.”

In 2002, Ecko launched Complex, a lifestyle magazine for men, so he has some experience with breaking out of the clothing box.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am now head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.