i love a business with good common sense and this is exactly what uniqlo, the japanese mass production clothes manufacturer/retailer, is. tadashi yanai, the chairman, president and ceo, decided to manufacture and sell the brand’s products exclusively in their stores. he also decided that the products will not follow fashion or trends so much as offering a never-ending selection of basics (the wall of socks in every colour you can imagine is a good example!). at very affordable prices. the ad campaigns feature an array of international models (our meg wi was featured in the korean ads) as well as a few choice superstars (currently, orlando bloom and charlize theron). nicola formichetti, of lady gaga, vogue hommes japan and mugler fame, is in charge of the styling. the manufacturing is done in china where they got before most so they have the best price/quality deals. it sounds like a great formula! and it certainly is: soon, world-wide, there will be 1,000 uniqlo stores. the brand is expanding so fast they needed to create a uniqlo university (no, i’m not kidding!) to train the new store managers. the target for 2020 is 4,000 stores worldwide and 5 trillion yen in annual sales (aprox. 61 bn USD). this also means beating giants zara, h&m, etc at their own game. it’s on!
in other uniqlo news, jil sander recently announced that her second (fall 2011) collection for uniqlo will also be the last although it’d been announced that the collaboration will go on indefinitely.
as far as i know, the closest store is the one in paris. in case you visit the city of lights, put this example of japanese efficiency on your list! i predict you won’t be disappointed!
source: wallpaper, forbes
photo credits: uniqlo