April 21, 2011, 3:35 PM

Columbia Sportswear plans to expand web sales in Europe and Canada

The apparel manufacturer and retailer hopes to launch sites in nine countries by 2012.

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Columbia Sportswear Co. this week announced an international e-commerce expansion effort, with retail sites planned for Canada and eight European countries by year’s end.

The outdoor sportswear manufacturer and multichannel retailer says the European countries  include Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands,  Spain and the United Kingdom. The company will launch sites for both its Columbia-branded products and its Sorel brand for shoes and boots. Consumers can shop all sites in local languages and make purchases in local currencies.

“We see e-commerce as an important tool that helps us fulfill our responsibility to build a strong brand for the benefit of customers and all of our business partners,” says Christian Finell, Columbia’s general manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. “E-commerce is an essential brand platform that allows us to bring our brands to life and help people find the styles they need to enjoy the outdoors.”

Columbia launched its U.S. e-commerce sites for the Columbia and Sorel brands in 2009. For more information about European e-commerce, click here.

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