June 3 2023

Fast Retailing aims for ¥10 trillion

Highlights from JapanConsuming monthly report

News and Analysis on Japanese retailing and consumers

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May 2023 Issue

Fast Retailing aims for ¥10 trillion

Uniqlo is such a mainstay of Japanese retailing, and indeed life, that its dominance seems inevitable and unchanging. Yet it has morphed from a local apparel chain and a mess of poorly judged acquisitions and failed overseas experiments into Japan’s biggest retail export – and even at this size, still manages to pull off 20% growth. While the latest target of ¥10 trillion is far-fetched, at least for now, its history of persistent determination suggests continued expansion is a certainty.

Editorial: Big Retail ripples

Aeon creates Japan’s two largest supermarket groups 

Following the consolidation of several supermarket chains in Shikoku and Chugoku last year, creating Japan’s largest supermarket group, Aeon has now announced that it will expand its existing stake in Inageya, rolling the company into USMH and creating another, even larger food operation. Aeon is looking for dominance in Tokyo’s food market and may seek more acquisitions but rivals are unlikely to give it a free hand nor say no to acquisitions of their own.

100 Yen Shops to hit ¥1 trillion

The 100 Yen shop model looked in danger when inflation began to bite and labour costs surged because their fixed price model meant there was little leeway to offset these higher costs through higher prices. But some have adapted quickly and the sector continues to grow.

Seven & I: the great sale begins with Barneys NY

The death of Seven & I’s founder has released management from the tight restrictions formed from loyalty to the founding family. As well as Barneys New York, other peripheral businesses now look likely to be sold.

Aeon to launch ground-breaking online food business

It has taken three years to build and set up but Aeon will finally open its first automated warehouse for online food sales in Chiba this summer. The warehouse will run on technology from Ocado and act as the backend for a completely new online supermarket called Green Beans. A second warehouse is due to come online in 2026, expanding sales to all of Tokyo and into Kanagawa.

Coop Sapporo: cheap logistics for all

Coop Sapporo recently began selling Muji and Seijo Ishii products on its e-commerce platform and will offer the same service to others. With regulations about to restrict long-distance deliveries, similar models could appear in other parts of the country, offering both domestic and foreign brands a more efficient logistics service – and cheaper for the end customer too. This is a threat to the big three online platforms.

Record sales for Aeon 

Aeon just announced record revenues of more than ¥9 trillion for FY2022. Its supermarket, mall development and drugstore businesses continue to strengthen and even the GMS business had a relatively good year even if it still has some way to go to generate a consistent profit. Meanwhile, Aeon plans to pour ¥150 billion a year into group-wide digital technologies.

Zozo consolidates market share

Zozo managed a 7% gain in GTVs last year which meant it grew its share of the fashion market. It now has more than 10 million active users and has laid down plans to reach ¥800 billion in GTVs in the medium term.

Itochu and Donki tie on retail media

Itochu, Familymart, PPI (Don Quijote) and their data analytics partners have come together in the first case of cross-retailer ad platform development. Itochu provides the central relationship that ties these companies together, and other deals are likely given the significant potential for retail media. The opportunity for brands to market to these retailers’ customers through highly targeted ads will become ever more compelling.

Focus

Economic Census 2021: Distribution Edition

The latest Economic Census for the distribution industry was published at the end of March, five years on from the previous survey. The survey provides a wealth of data on the distribution industry, offering a snapshot macro view of the number of stores, businesses, employees, sales and sales space in Japan and allowing simple comparison with other markets such as the USA that collect similar datasets. This helps put Japan’s distribution industry in context, both as a major industry domestically and in comparison to markets elsewhere in the world.

Retail Data: Station/Fashion Buildings keep up momentum

IN BRIEF

Tourist numbers now 65% of 2019 levels but spending up 48%

Frozen food consumption jumps more than 10%

New inflation highs exceed expectations

Premium golf brands outperform

malls up 11.5% in March on strong clothing sales

Bag market up 7.2%

Itochu to ramp up Under Armour expansion

Matsuya rebounds on luxury accessories

Yahoo Mart offers products from Yahoo Shopping

Locondo becomes Jade Group

Record sales for Roppongi Hills

Cashless transactions account for 36% of total

Mitsui Fudosan invests in retail and logistics

Baby and childrenswear apparel market up 1%

Mitsui to open LaLa Terrace in Tokyo

Samantha Thavasa raises ¥1.8 billion from Konaka

Korean cosmetics brand Aestura in Japan

A new landmark for Nagoya

Kriss Soonik opens first Japan store

Mami Plus brings discount foods to Saitama

Aeon Food Style opens in Shinjuku

Sogo Seibu still not sold

Court supports Panasonic over Dyson

Genky: all stores hybrid drugstore-supermarkets

Hokuriku Shinkansen extension boost to region

Seven Eleven: 50,000 stores internationally

Ayura in Imperial Hotel

Aeon expands Soyora NSCs

Brands and Companies in this Issue

Adastria, 1, 4
Aeon, 1, 4, 6–11, 13
Aeon Mall, 11
Aeon Retail, 1, 10–11
Aestura, 9
Ainz, 13
Akachan Honpo, 8
Amazon, 9
Amorepacific, 9
Amu Plaza, 18
Apita, 13
Ark Hills, 7
Askul, 1, 6
Atobarrier, 9
Atre Ebisu, 18
Atre Kawasaki, 18
Authentic Brands, 7
Ayura, 13
Azabudai Hills, 7
Barneys Japan, 7
Beisia, 4
Belluna, 8
Cabin, 3
Cainz, 7–8
Can Do, 6–7
CFC, 8
CGC, 10
Chacot, 13
Chiyoda, 1
Coca Cola, 13
Coop Sapporo, 1, 9
Costco, 4
Cyberagent, 13
Daiei, 3
Daimaru, 1
Daiso Sangyo, 6
Data One, 13
Dome, 6
Don Quijote, 2, 13
Dyson, 11–12
Edistorial Store, 12
Familymart, 2, 9, 13
Fashionwalker, 7
Fast Retailing, 1–4
Ferragamo, 12
Fortress Group, 8
FrancFranc, 8
Fuji, 10–11
Fuku Yakuhin, 11
Genky, 1, 12
Giordano, 3
Green Beans, 8–9
GU, 1, 3
Hankyu, 1
Heattech, 1
Hitachi Transport, 8
IKEA, 4
Imperial Hotel, 13
Inageya, 4, 11
Isetan, 1, 7
Itochu, 1–2, 6, 13
Jade Group, 7
Joinus, 18
Kaibara Lab, 13
Kenzo, 12
Kokumin, 11
Komeri, 1
Komonoya, 6
Konaka, 9
Kriss Soonik, 10
Laox, 7–8
Lawson, 13
Locondo, 7
Loft, 8
Lohaco, 9
Lumine Est, 18
Majica, 13
Mami Mart, 10
Mami Plus, 10
Maruetsu Petit, 11
Marunaka, 10
Matsuya, 1, 6
Matsuzakaya, 1
Maxvalu West, 10
Mercari, 9
Mitsubishi Shoji, 3
Mitsui Fudosan, 8
Mitsukoshi, 1
Mori, 7
Mori Buildings, 7
Muji, 1–2, 6–7, 9
Nanocare, 11
Nippon Delica, 13
Nitori, 1, 8
Ocado, 8–9
Oneview, 3
OniGo, 13
Pal, 7
Panasonic, 11–12
Parco Shibuya, 10, 12
Pearly Gates, 4
Piago, 13
PPI, 13
Raf Simons, 12
Rakuten, 9
Reebok, 7
Rohto, 13
Ron Herman, 12
Roppongi Hills, 7
Samantha Thavasa, 9
Seijo Ishii, 9, 11
Seiyu, 9
Senshukai, 8
Seria, 6–7
Seven Eleven, 11, 13
Shimamura, 1
Shiseido, 13
Smile Seed, 4
Sogo Seibu, 1, 8, 11
Standard Products, 6–7
Sumitomo Corporation, 7
Takashimaya, 1
Theory, 3
Threeppy, 6
Tokio Marine, 7
Tokyu Hands, 8
Topvalu, 10
Tower Records, 8
TSI, 4
Tsuruha, 1
Uniqlo, 1, 3–4
USMH, 4, 10–11
Watts, 6–7
Welcia, 11
Workman, 1
Yahoo, 6–7, 11–12
Yahoo Mart, 6–7
Yaoko, 10
Zozo, 1–2, 11–12
Zozocosme, 12

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