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- May 1, 2014: Vol. 8, Number 5

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Brand new world: American brands are moving into the Nordic countries in a big way

by Marcel Kokkeel

According to the old Norse legends, Lief Erikson and his brave band of Vikings were the first Europeans to set foot on the continent of North America, sometime around 1000 AD — more than 500 years before Christopher Columbus made his epic voyage from Spain to the New World. Now, in a kind of historical reverse flow, it is the New Worlders who are discovering the alluring landscape of Nordic retailing.

A growing number of American brands have moved into the expanding Nordic market in recent years, lured by the region’s economic stability and highly prosperous but relatively unexploited markets. They include Victoria’s Secret, which opened in 2013 at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport and later at Gothenburg’s Landvetter Airport after a successful launch at Copenhagen Airport in October 2012.

Starbucks also initially took the flying route, beginning its move into the Nordics in 2010 with shops in airports in Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm and Helsinki, and continuing its

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