By Michelle Graff
Paris--French brand Mauboussin has shuttered the Madison Avenue boutique it opened in 2008 and appointed new leadership for the North American market, with plans to open in a smaller space in New York later this year.

Isabelle Kellogg, the U.S. spokesperson for the Paris-based jewelry house, said the high cost of the rent was the reason the brand decided to close the boutique. It was located at 714 Madison Ave. between 63rd and 64th streets, a five-story space located along one of the toniest stretches of retail in the world, buffered by David Yurman on one side and Jimmy Choo on the other.

In addition, Mauboussin has appointed Rita Jammet as interim CEO for North America.

The one-year contract of Thierry Chaunu, a former executive with Damiani who was brought on board in 2013 to head Mauboussin’s expansion in North America, will run out in late summer. According to Kellogg, it is unclear if Chaunu will remain with Mauboussin in some capacity after his contract expires.

Chaunu could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Also unclear at this time is if the brand will pursue opening wholesale accounts with retailers in the U.S.

When Chaunu came on board, it was reported that Mauboussin aimed to be in a dozen doors in the U.S. market by the end of the year, selling in a mix of independent jewelers, department stores, boutiques and specialty stores.

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No accounts have been opened to date, however, and the company, which was set to exhibit at Las Vegas market week this year, pulled out of the Couture show.

Kellogg said the brand’s focus for now is finding a new space in New York City for its store, specifically a  smaller space in Manhattan by the end of the year. “We still think it’s important for us to be in New York in some way, shape or form,” she said.

Mauboussin was established in Paris in 1827. The brand has more than 40 stores in France and eight locations outside the country, in Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Dubai, Moscow, Tel Aviv, Beirut and Marrakesh, Morocco. 

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