Business Intelligence on Retailing, Franchising, and Consumerism in China

Japan's Muji To Open 20 New Stores In China In 2011

Japanese retail company Muji has announced that Muji's sales in China have accounted for 8.7% of the company's overall sales, making China the most important overseas market for the company.

Muji plans to open 20 new stores in China in 2011. According to its Chinese official website, Muji has developed 28 stores in over ten Chinese cities. Muji's expansion plan for 2011 shows that the company plans to open 39 new stores outside Japan in 2011.

A senior executive from Muji revealed that the company's annual sales are about JPY163.7 billion. By the end of May 2011, it had 369 stores in Japan and 139 stores in overseas markets. By 2012, Muji expects sales of JPY40 billion from overseas stores.

The executive said Muji's sales of individual stores in China have been growing. Unlike the Japanese market, the Chinese market made major revenue from apparel while food is the major income source of the Japanese market.

In addition, Muji seldom opens outlets in department stores in Japan, while department stores are major shopping sites for Chinese consumers. To cut costs, Muji has tried to produce products in China and sold to local market, saving 10% on logistics fees. Prior to this, products made in China was first shipped back to Japan and then to the Chinese market.

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