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Borders Books & Music To Open Its First Bilingual Store In Plaza Las Americas

Gets ready to open Feb. 19 with 150,000 book, music, and video titles;
will include coffee shop featuring wine, beer, teas, and light menu

by Lucienne Gigante

January 21, 2000
Copyright © 2000 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Borders Books & Music is getting ready to open its first bilingual store on the island next month, leading various stateside retailers entering the local market this year, including Eckerds Drug and Macy's.

"We are introducing a new concept in books and music to Puerto Rico's market," Ann Binkley, public relations manager of Borders Inc. told CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. "Since this is our first bilingual Borders store, it's the perfect opportunity for us to learn from the Spanish speaking area."

The 28,750-square-foot superstore--the first of its kind in Puerto Rico--will be located in Plaza Las Americas. as part of its ongoing expansion that will convert the mall into a 2.1 million square foot retail, food and entertainment venue. The opening date is scheduled for February 19th.

The two-story store will also have a coffee shop, "Cafe Espresso", that in addition to carrying a selection of coffees and teas, will offer beer and wine. Cafe Espresso will also feature a light menu including soups and gourmet desserts.

Borders will carry more than 150,000 titles among books, music, and video, 40% of these will be in Spanish, according to Binkley. "We carry Spanish titles in other stores, but no to the extent we will in Puerto Rico," she said.

Borders book selection includes the latest novels, popular classics, business writing and a wide selection of international magazines and newspapers. The film department will include the latest in movie releases, DVDs, music videos, silver screen classics, and literary adaptations. In terms of music, Borders will carry Latin pop, jazz, classical, blues, new age and world music titles. "Our store inviting atmosphere encourages people to spend time, browse and listen to music before making the purchase," she said.

Borders has put together a local management team including music and book buyers and a community relations' coordinator. "This will be a wonderful opportunity that will enable us to do events that we've haven't done before," she said, adding that the chain has strong commitment to the community and sponsor regular author appearances, musical performances, and benefits. In addition to the management team Borders will employ about 100 people. Meanwhile, the company is kicking-off the New Year with a local advertising campaign to create brand awareness.

Global retailers of books, music, video, Borders Group, Inc. (NYSE:BGP) has more than 300 stores located in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and Singapore. In 1997, the Borders Group launched a new subsidiary, Borders Online, Inc. which oversees the production of website with access to about 700,000 titles and more than 10 million books, music and video items in stock.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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