The fashion chain Zara plans to open a record fifth store on London's Oxford Street, reinforcing the buoyant demand for prime retail property in the capital.
Zara, owned by the Spanish giant Inditex, already has three shops there and has signed up for a fourth in the street's Park House development, which opens next year.
It has applied for planning consent on a fifth store at 61-65 Oxford Street near Tottenham Court Road Tube, which is getting a £1bn redevelopment for Crossrail. If, as expected, Zara's planning application is successful, the store opening is likely to be next year.
Zara also has two stores in nearby Regent Street. Other brands Inditex operates in central London include Pull & Bear, Massimo Dutti and Bershka.
One of Zara's biggest rivals in London is Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), the Swedish clothing group. It has four shops in Oxford Street and one on Regent Street.
But the Swedish group said it has not signed up for the Park House scheme, which is the biggest development on Oxford Street for 40 years. The property giant Land Securities sold Park House to the Qatari investment firm Barwa in July 2010 for £250m, as well as a profit share on completion.
Inditex, which also operates the Stradivarius, Oysho, and Uterqüe chains, has a total of 5,527 stores in 82 countries. Based in Spain's Coruna, the group delivered profits of €1.93bn last year, on turnover of €13.8bn.
H&M, which also owns the H&M Home, Cos, Monki, Weekday and Cheap Monday brands, has nearly 2,500 stores in 44 territories.
Revenues in the year to 30 November were 110bn Swedish krona (£10.1bn) on profits of 15.8bn krona.