Manhattan shoppers, it seems, just can’t get enough cheap clothes. On May 20, the Swedish fast-fashion retailer H&M opened its largest store in the world, at 63,000 square feet, in the midtown shopping district of Herald Square—just steps away from two other large H&M stores.
One is a block away, and the other is basically across the street, just on the other side of Sixth Avenue.
The new store is a shiny, hulking testament to the juggernaut of H&M’s expanding global empire. It’s one of 400 stores the company plans to open in 2015, mostly in the US and China but also in some emerging markets such as India and South Africa. That number followed on H&M’s statement last June that it would open about 375 stores by the end of 2014.
And these stores seem to be getting bigger. Just reading about a new “world’s largest H&M” provokes déjà vu: The previous largest location—at 57,000 square feet and also in Manhattan—opened just last year.
What’s perhaps most amazing about this explosion of H&M stores is that the company isn’t just bringing in huge revenues, it’s also bringing in huge profits, even as it pours money back into its expansion. In 2014, profits rose 17% (pdf) over the previous year.
That success is evident in the huge lines that form for new store openings around the world.
As for Manhattan, where H&M is becoming like Starbucks—the gold standard of market saturation—H&M isn’t concerned that stores will cannibalize each other’s sales if they’re in close proximity. “We are gaining market share,” Daniel Kulle, H&M’s North American president, told MarketWatch. “[The stores] aren’t taking share from each other.”
The company has no plans to close any of its stores on 34th Street, a spokesperson for H&M tells Quartz.
The 34th Street Partnership, a nonprofit dedicated to improving business in the district, isn’t complaining about its triplicate H&Ms. “The 34th Street Partnership is elated to have the H&M anchor store in its district,” a spokesperson tells Quartz. “It underscores the strength and vibrancy of the 34th Street retail corridor, whose pedestrian traffic remains unsurpassed.”
In addition to three H&Ms, that corridor also includes Zara, Uniqlo, Gap, Old Navy, and Forever 21.