By Paul Chung
Image credit: @SimonQ錫濛譙.
Think Uniqlo has enough stores in Shanghai already? Wrong! This fall, the Japanese fashion retailer will open yet another China-sized global flagship store-its largest outlet yet-on the city’s upscale shopping street, Huaihai Road.
In May 2010, Uniqlo opened its fourth global flagship store in Shanghai [Ed.: contributing to the general degradation of the word ‘flagship’], after New York, London, and Paris. The massive 3,300 square meter West Nanjing Road flagship store is currently the largest out of the forty Uniqlo stores in the city.
The future 6,600 square meter Huaihai Road store will not only be double the size of the West Nanjing Road outlet, but also be substantially larger than the company’s current largest store in Tokyo’s Ginza district.
“We have wanted to open a new Uniqlo global flagship store, and in fact our largest flagship store worldwide, in Shanghai for quite some time and we are very happy to have been able to realize our dream,” said Pan Ning, CEO of Fast Retailing (China) Trading, the parent company of Uniqlo.
As of the end of March, Uniqlo operates 189 stores in Mainland China and plans on opening 100 new stores annually. The company first entered the Chinese market in 2002.
Uniqlo’s new Huaihai Road location (the second on that street) will open in the former space of the Yongxin Department store at the intersection of Huaihai Road and Maoming Road.
Forget the Diaoyu islands. Chinese nationalism may look all great and robust, but alas, it will never supersede the power of the consumer revolution.