Shoppers of designer jeans or brand names like Lucky Brand, Silver Jeans, DC, K-Swiss, BillABong or Element will have another place to shop when Buckle opens at Dakota Square Mall next summer.
"(Buckle's) denim is very strong for them fashion denim is hard to find anywhere else so they have been very successful," said Chuck Massey, general manager of the mall. "They've weathered the economic storm throughout the country very well and is one of the few retailers that has done very well the last several months."
Aside from their designer jeans collection, Buckle also offers more than 100 brands, some well-known names like Fox, Guess, Roxy, Steve Madden and Volcom as well as outerwear, casual apparel, accessories and footwear from private labels for both men and women.
In negotiations for more than six months, Massey said the company recently signed a long-term contract with Dakota Square and should open by July 2010.
With three Buckle locations already in North Dakota at the malls in Grand Forks, Fargo and Bismarck, officials said it was the logical next step.
"The last three years we've had tremendous sales increases in all our North Dakota locations," said Brett Milkie, vice president of leasing for Buckle, based in Kearney, Neb. "We were at a point with the stores that it made sense to move ahead with a Minot location."
Designed for 4,500 square feet, the apparel store will be located in the former CVS storefront on the JC Penney side of the mall and will also take over the space The Teacher's Aid currently occupies when that business closes in January.
With only 2,500 square feet of the 15,800-square-foot former CVS space taken up by the Buckle, what is to come of the rest of the space?
Dakota Square is currently in negotiations with another company to occupy part of the space, Massey said, but he declined to name the business, saying only that it was a clothing store. An announcement on that proposal is expected to come after the holidays.
As for the Buckle, Massey said construction will begin in January in preparation for Buckle store designers to take over at a time.
The company anticipates opening the new store July 21 or July 22, Milkie said, and would begin hiring between 20 and 25 employees two weeks prior to the opening.