Category Archives for "Free Content"

Jun 03

May Top Stories

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, […]

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Apr 18

April Top Stories

Retail media: retailers taking control of marketing channelsRetail media in its traditional sense is nothing new, simply referring to the use of advertising in stores, but in modern terms retail media is something far, far bigger. It is not only a trend in the US, but one that is about to explode in Japan – […]

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Mar 17

March Top Stories

Rakuten fighting hard as Amazon Japan becomes No. 2 retailerThe big online malls continue to grow at higher rates than many branded e-commerce stores, meaning consecutive annual gains in market share. But between them, Amazon’s lead now seems to be widening while Rakuten is also pulling ahead of Z Holdings, which continues to struggle with […]

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Feb 16

February Top Stories

Footwear sales rebound in weakened sectorFootwear sales plummeted during Covid, except for sports and hiking shoes, with a deleterious impact on all the big three retailers. While ABC Mart has recovered, Chiyoda and G-Foot continue to struggle, leaving the market wide open. Disruption is coming. Editorial: E-commerce: the best there is Komehyo opens new Ginza […]

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Jan 13

January Top Stories

Giftee: digital gifting surges for consumer businessesThe gift market has contracted in recent years as corporate and formal gift giving has declined, but companies and individuals are enthusiastic adopters of digital gifting thanks to the convenience. Businesses, in particular, are using eGifts as marketing and promotion tools and Giftee is one of the biggest beneficiaries […]

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Jan 05

December 2022 Top Stories

Domestic tourism surges back to life as inbound traffic rises The long awaited lifting of restrictions on inbound tourists in October seems to have given new confidence to domestic tourists too. Major airlines, hotels and railways are all reporting a significant uplift in bookings with several forecasting that figures will exceed 2019 by March next […]

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Dec 05

November Top Stories

Inflation at 30 year high The CPI hit 3% in September, excluding fresh food and adjusting for consumption tax. Prices are rising due to increased global supply costs. While the government and multiple economists optimistically expect price rises to level out, households are feeling the pinch and may well cut back spending even more. Editorial: […]

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Nov 01

October Top Stories

Itochu signs Forever 21, American Eagle returns alone Two major US apparel retailers are returning to the Japanese market for another go. One previously entered alone but will now partner with a major Japanese retailer, and the other partnered with a major retailer first time around but will now go it alone, although with support […]

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Sep 29

September Top Stories

E-commerce 2021-22: another high growth year E-commerce sales of physical goods jumped nearly 9% in FY2021. Although this was well down on the pandemic-induced surge the year before, it is still higher than in any year since 2016 and leaves the sector well on track to become the largest single format channel. Total sales finished […]

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Jul 08

July-August Top Stories

Sale of Sogo Seibu imminentInitial reports suggest that Fortress Investment, part of the Softbank group of funds, is now the frontrunner in negotiations to acquire Sogo Seibu department stores from Seven & I, beating another major investment firm and Singapore’s state fund, GIC. Reports suggest Fortress is already in discussions with privately owned retailer Yodobashi […]

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Jun 13

June Top Stories

Big apparel looks for new relevanceThe two leading apparel firms, World and Onward, posted largely negative results for 2021 although profitability improved for World, while 3rd ranked TSI pushed ahead thanks to the golf boom. The outlook for big apparel remains uncertain; although most executives are optimistic about a rebound in sales of premium apparel […]

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Apr 05

April Top Stories

Widespread price rises at retail and wholesale With energy costs still rising and ongoing supply-chain issues exacerbated by the re-emergence of Covid problems in China, Japanese consumers suddenly face the prospect of genuine price inflation – as opposed to the imaginary one that the government has tried to promote for the past decade. How will […]

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Mar 03

March Top Stories

Household expenditure increases in 2021 and more of it online The latest figures show that, even though incomes fell for the first time in five years in 2021, average monthly household expenditure recovered and then accelerated at the end of the year. Online spending grew significantly, and much of this was new growth. Editorial: Getting […]

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Mar 03

February Top Stories

Seven & I to sell Sogo Seibu Department Stores Numerous reports indicate that Seven & I is preparing its Sogo Seibu department store subsidiary for sale. This follows years of calls from major investors to dispose of underperforming assets at Japan’s second largest retail conglomerate. Although it is a step forward, Seven & I still […]

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Mar 03

January Top Stories

Cainz takes on Nitori with Tokyu Hands takeover Iconic retail chain, Tokyu Hands, is to be acquired by Cainz, Japan’s leading home centre retailer. Tokyu Hands remains as popular as ever thanks to its unique merchandising, but it has struggled to be profitable for a long time. This is something that Cainz should be able […]

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Dec 03

December Top Stories

Baycrews grows online sales to 50% of turnoverBaycrews is showing how it’s done. It is tying stores and online to create real omnichannel retailing and making best use of staff knowledge and experience, an increasingly crucial asset in the competitive online fashion market. Editorial: A real festive season in 2021 B8ta opens 3rd Japanese storeB8ta […]

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Dec 03

November Top Stories

Zozo launches OMO platform, opens first pop-up store Zozo is getting physical: it will open its first popup physical store and start a new platform service to make it easy for merchants’ shop staff to sell and communicate with Zozo customers. Other big platforms are following suit. Zozo will also launch a new measuring service […]

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Oct 05

October Top Stories

Online fashion sales soarContraction in apparel consumption aside, fashion retailers and brands have made dramatic strides to pull in customers online with e-commerce sales up 24% last year according to one survey, faster than the growth in e-commerce overall. Even some wholesalers are succeeding digitally. Editorial: Ready to recover? Alpen aims for record salesSports chain […]

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Sep 06

September Top Stories

Muji: a ¥3 trillion brand by 2030?Ryohin Keikaku fired a broadside at Uniqlo last month when it confirmed not only that its new president would be a former lieutenant to Tadashi Yanai, but that it plans to reduce prices to compete with Uniqlo in apparel and Nitori in home.  While Muji is today a quarter […]

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Jul 13

July-August Top Stories

Shrinking, ageing Japan but a growing solo marketThe latest Census confirms the ongoing fall in total population across most of the country but reveals surprising growth markets in small pockets, particularly around Greater Tokyo which now accounts for 29% of the total population. There are also ever growing numbers of single people, expanding the promising […]

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