J.Crew CEO Mickey Drexler responds to pricing outcry

Drexler: London J.Crew most important in a while
Drexler: London J.Crew most important in a while

J. Crew's upcoming foray into London has already sparked a backlash in the U.K. press.

An article by The Telegraph on Tuesday reported that the retailer's new Regent Street store has "largely swapped pound signs for dollar signs," bumping prices nearly 60 percent higher than in the U.S.

CEO Mickey Drexler told CNBC he finds it "a little stunning" that the brand is being called out on raising prices, as it's typical across all types of business to raise prices overseas, where the cost of doing business is higher.

"There's nothing to explain," he said. "When has it been that prices in the U.K. for American products haven't been higher?"

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Multicolored decorated sections of London taxi cabs sit above the front windows of J.Crew Group's new store on Regent Street in London.
Jason Alden | Bloomberg | Getty Images

"For some reason, and I can't explain it, there seems to be an attachment to talk about retail apparel pricing and not gasoline, not cars, not computers and nothing else. ... It's a fact of life given the economics," he said.

J. Crew's Regent Street store opens Friday and is the retailer's first flagship location overseas. Drexler said the store is arguably the most important location the retailer has opened in awhile, as it will be an indication of how the brand will be received in the rest of Europe.

—By CNBC's Krystina Gustafson.