Category Archives for "JC Headlines"

Sep 02

JapanConsuming Headlines: October 2011

Tesco to pull out of Japan September began with the not unexpected news that Tesco will look to sell off its Japan operations. Although this will be chalked up as yet another overseas failure, the British supermarket has had a positive impact on food retailing in Tokyo. Focus: Specialty apparel chains FY2010: bigger is better […]

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Jul 06

JapanConsuming Headlines: July/August 2011

Retail Results FY2010: profit, profit, profit The annual results for the retail and distribution sector show that an incredible 31 of 47 top retailers increased pretax profit by double digits last year. FY2010 was a particularly good year for the majority of firms, so much so that the usual situation where the problem companies standout […]

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Jun 02

JapanConsuming Headlines: June 2011

Focus: Fashion demand: simple and casual Preference for casual fashions over smarter high end apparel is a clear trend in Japan as much as any other advanced market. What is different is the extent to which Japanese tastes have shifted and why. With less and less inclination to follow the dictates of fashion authorities, whether […]

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May 04

JapanConsuming Headlines: May 2011

Distribution concentration: and then there were Seven It is a time-honoured tradition for experts and retailers to insist on just how fragmented the distribution sector is in Japan. It is true that there are more than 1 million shops and 350,000 wholesale outlets, and that the largest single retailer by sales, Seven Eleven, accounts for […]

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Apr 10

JapanConsuming Headlines: April 2011

The next chapter: recovery for Japan Following the events of 11 March 2011, it is a difficult month to write about business topics in Japan. The terrible consequences of the earthquake cannot be understated, but Japan will bounce back. The response from Japanese and foreign companies alike has been fantastic (a long list of examples […]

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Mar 04

JapanConsuming: Headlines March 2011

Focus: A resounding cheer from big retailers in 2010 The 2010 calendar year results show a marked improvement on 2009, with yet more clear signs of revival for department stores and a certain buoyancy in other retail sectors. Sales for Tokyo department stores may be at almost half what they were in 1990 but the […]

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Feb 05

JapanConsuming Headlines: February 2011

Focus: Who pays what in Japanese retailing: Salary survey A recent survey published by Shogyokai provides a rare insight into pay scales at major retailers and service companies. For the average employee, salaries at major direct marketing firms are highest, with department stores paying the lowest on average. Employees at department stores are, however, incredibly […]

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Jan 05

JapanConsuming Headlines: January 2011

Focus: Shopping centres: rewards but only for hard work In FY2008 sales of the top 100 shopping centres (SCs) fell and in FY2009 were even worse. At the same time both 2009 and 2010 proved to be much quieter for shopping centre developers, producing the lowest number of new SCs since 2001. The worst performers […]

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Dec 03

JapanConsuming Headlines December 2010

Focus: Fewer weddings, bigger budgets The number of weddings in Japan is falling due to a falling population, a general disinclination to get married at all and the rising age of the betrothed. The good news is that the budgets being allocated by those who do get married have been rising consistently in recent years. […]

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Nov 06

JapanConsuming: Headlines November 2010

Focus: Franchise bullies? The convenience store problem Convenience stores are the one format that Japan has truly made its own. Appearing here first only 35 years ago, the big convenience store operators are some of the largest retail companies in the country and dominate the food distribution channel in terms of sales. It is also […]

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Oct 04

JapanConsuming Headlines: October 2010

Focus: Specialty apparel chains: Sales fall for 80% Following on from September’s focus on apparel distribution overall, this month we take a closer look at the most dominant apparel retail format: specialty chains. Just as for apparel retailing overall, it was a terrible year for the specialty chains. Although the format extended its lead in […]

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Sep 06

JapanConsuming Headlines: September 2010

Focus: Apparel Retailing FY2009: only cheerful for the cheap, or just really smart A breathtakingly bad set of results characterised apparel retailing in FY2009 with almost every major retailer failing to find growth for a second consecutive year. This is not surprising given the triple whammy of deflation, consumer demand for more for less, and […]

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Jul 07

JapanConsuming: Headlines July/August 2010

Focus: Retail Results FY2009 The complete picture: dynamic retailers to the fore The latest financial results for FY2009 are now out. It was not a good year for many given the economic problems and consumers who are still unwilling to spend, but even so, a good number of retailers produced very solid gains, both in […]

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Jun 18

JapanConsuming Headlines: June 2010

Retail pioneers: selling food online Selling food online remains a business still in its infancy in Japan despite Seiyu opening the first online supermarket way back in 2000. Small though it may be, most of the leading food retailers now have some form of sales channel through the internet, and there are a few other […]

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May 04

JapanConsuming: Headlines May 2010

Focus: Sports: a bright light in the fashion industry “A cloudless blue sky, snowy peaks of Fujisan in the background, and a shimmering patch of green perfection ahead as his ball drops within a metre of the flag. Other than the appreciative murmurings of equally privileged colleagues enjoying a day away from the pressures of […]

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Apr 06

JapanConsuming Headlines: April 2010

Focus: Japan only big enough for 80 department stores J-Front’s chairman recently suggested a department store needs a catchment of a minimum of 1 million people to work. On a pro rata basis, this suggests 130 department stores could survive well enough, fewer than half the current total. However, add in population spread and transport […]

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Mar 09

JapanConsuming Headlines: March 2010

2009 12-month results: couldn’t have been worse The calendar year results for 2009 are unusually important. In addition to providing a hint at how financial performances may turn out with the end of year results to be announced in February and March, the numbers this year show a clear picture of how different formats are […]

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Feb 03

JapanConsuming Headlines: February 2010

Used goods retailing now for everyone Japanese may be famous for buying luxury brands, but nowadays not everyone is looking to get the latest product brand new. There is a growing and increasingly professional market in second hand goods, and second hand apparel and branded items are a key part of it. Several chains have […]

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Jan 05

JapanConsuming Headlines January 2010

Focus: Japan warms to online shopping There is a warm glow of satisfaction and even excitement in one area of consumer distribution: online shopping. Almost all the leading online shopping malls, web stores and mobile shops are enjoying strong growth as consumers shift their spending online. Wider selections, keen prices and the comfort of shopping […]

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Dec 03

JapanConsuming Headlines: December 2009

Bonuses slump, gift giving declines, department stores wail Department stores are in dire straights. This is hardly news after 20 months of ongoing decline and forecasts of the lowest annual sales total since 1985. Department store obituaries have been written numerous times already, not least in JC, but the death of their role in the […]

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