German shoe retailers started the year with a nominal 1% sales increase in January.

The Belgian panel of shoe retailers consulted by VDK indicates an average 24.7% increase in their sales in February, as compared to the same month one year ago, with a 16% increase in volume.

El Naturalista has opened its first U.S. store in Santa Monica, California.

A Camper Kids store is due to open in Belgium soon.

Sergio Rossi opens a store on London’s Sloane Street.

Tod’s opens the second Hogan store in Hong Kong.

BasicNet has stipulated a new 5-year distribution agreement for Superga in Canada.

Sioux has taken over the responsibility for the footwear line of Joop!, a German brand that belongs to Sioux’s new parent company, Egana Goldpfeil, since 2003.

Repetto has signed a license for jewelry and watches with a company, IJD, that is already a licensee of Sonia Rykiel.

Meindl introduced at ISPO the first-ever Canadian boot lined with Gore-Tex, though the company admits that many of its competitors will likely follow suit by next season.

Crocs Europe has appointed Nico de Jong, former marketing manager at KPN, the Dutch telecoms group, as retail development manager to spread the Crocs store concept around the largest European cities.

Vasque Footwear has hired Chris Speak as its new director of sales, joining the American company from JanSport.

John Bidegain has left Tsubo, the American footwear company where he acted as export manager, and he is not going to be replaced.

Andrea Ghizzani has been elected as chairman of Consorzio Vera Pelle Italiana Conciata, an Italian consortium of 26 tanners that guarantee a vegetable tanning process for their leather.

Dutch Delight has taken on the agency of Spain’s RAS in Germany.

Coming Up is the new French agent for Decker’s Simple shoes.

Christophe Trinel, the French agent of Manas, is now taking care of Britain’s Loake as well.

Thorsten Ludwig’s Arkos Consulting, which acts as German agent of Lizard, Stonefly and the brands of Grendene, has added Kefas, the outdoor footwear brand of Italy’s Stylgrand, to its portfolio.

A Chinese footwear manufacturer, Aokang, will be the official supplier of leather products to the Beijing Olympic Games.