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First Hong Kong Apple Store to open this year

Dana Franklin

The South China Morning Post reports that Apple will open its first retail store in Hong Kong later this year. The International Finance Center (IFC) Mall in the central district of Hong Kong Island will host the new 15,000 square foot location. A second Hong Kong Apple store, a 20,000 square foot shop in Hysan Place in Causeway Bay, is planned for 2012.

According to the Morning Post, Apple negotiated a 10-year lease for the retail space in the IFC mall. The company will spend an estimated US$20 million to construct its first store in Hong Kong and up to $9.2 million a year on rent. An Apple spokesperson told the Morning Post the IFC store "will be similar" to Apple's high-profile retail locations in London, Paris, and Shanghai.

Located near two office towers and a soon-to-open Four Seasons Hotel, The IFC mall houses approximately 200 shops representing about 100 different international brands. Hong Kong is home to about 7 million people and hosts approximately 32 million tourists a year.

Apple opened its first store in China in July, 2008. The four locations in China -- two in Beijing and two in Shanghai -- each receive over 40,000 visitors a day, says Ron Johnson, senior vice president of retail operations for Apple. That is four times the traffic to Apple's stores in the rest of the world. The company plans to open a total of 20 new stores in China this year.

Apple has 323 retail stores worldwide.

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