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Chain_Store _Expansion_Strategy

Why PRINCESSE tam.tam ended up leaving the Japan market?

PRINCESSE tam.tam, a French lingerie retail brand owned and operated by Fast Retailing (UNIQLO operator), shut down the brand in Japan in March 2016, after struggling to gain brand awareness in Japan. On March 25 2016, NIKKEI newspaper wrote as follows; The reason is assumed that PRINCESSE tam.tam failed to increase brand awareness and sales did not grow after starting retail expansion in 2012. PRINCESSE tam.tam opened the first store in Ginza in November 2012, and after that, opened 3 stores within 41 months until March 2016.  Direct operation stores were in Ikebukuro (Tokyo), in Setagaya-ku (Tokyo) and in Osaka.  It also operated on-line store (as listed here, in Japanese). PRINCESSE tam.tam …

Princesse tam.tam Japan store

Oops, BLUE STAR DONUTS did it again – very risky store expansion –

Introducing recent chain store expansion case in Japan that we went “oops…”.  We hope others will not do it again. Let’s take a look at the store expansion of BLUE STAR DONUTS (branded CAMDEN’S BLUE STAR DONUTS in Japan).  They opened Japan’s first store in April 2015 at LOG ROAD DAIKANYAMA, shibuya-ku, Tokyo. BLUE STAR DONUTS operates 7 stores in Japan as of November 2016, as listed below. No. Store Name Prefecture Opened Date 1 Daikanyama Tokyo April 2015 2 Yokohama Kanagawa March 2016 3 Shinjuku LUMINE1 Tokyo September 6th, 2016 4 Umeda Hanshin Osaka September 7th, 2016 5 Shibuya HIKARIE Tokyo September 16th, 2016 6 Shinsaibashi OPA Osaka September 16th, 2016 …


How should Carl’s Jr expand to establish the brand in Japan?

Carl’s Jr to re-enter Japan market with its 1st store in Akihabara As we conducted “Retail Brands Consumer Awareness & Usage Survey” in June 2016 covering the burger restaurant chain brand Carl’s Jr, we recently visited their 1st store in Akihabara (picture) that just opened in March 2016. Carl’s Jr once entered Japan market in 1989 but left the market only after several years, due to the partnership issues.  This is their 2nd Japan entry with a new partner, and we really hope it works this time. Enjoying delicious burger lunch with ice cream shake, we discussed how Carl’s Jr should expand stores in Japan in order to make it.  We’d like …


On grand opening of Blue Bottle Coffee: the mystery of Japanese “Gyouretsu” culture

Blue Bottle Coffee and “Gyouretsu” Have you heard a Japanese word “Gyouretsu“? That’ what you saw at Blue Bottle Coffee that opened today its 1st store in Japan — it means a long line of customers waiting to enter the store. I was also a part of them who went to the store before 8AM this morning, but there were already a long line of customers waiting in chilly outside air.  I was told I need to wait 2 hours to get into the store, so I unfortunately had to give up tasting their coffee in order not to be late for work.  I will be back! It is reported that the line of …


How to make Japan market entry a success – Key Success Factors

How to make Japan market entry a success – for profitable and sustainable business development of a new brand You can download free PowerPoint presentation file of this article from the bottom of this page. It is almost magical to see how a foreign retail brand can achieve a literally overnight success here in Japan — the first store can easily break the world sales record with off the charts customer transactions. If that brand can expand its store network in the right way, Japan market can grow to a star moneymaker for that brand. To name a few of such examples: McDonald’s Japan opened its 1st store in Ginza …

Grand Opening

Japanese retail market basics: key facts & trends for store development planning

Welcome to Japanese retail market! Assuming you are a global retailer and new to this market, please let us brief you with the basic facts about Japanese retail market that should be helpful to start thinking your Japan market development strategies. 1. Facts about the land and the population In a nutshell: in Japan, retail markets are intensely concentrated in small flat areas of Kanto Area and Kansai Area, especially in Tokyo-to. Consumers mostly trip by the train network. 127 million Japanese people live in 47 prefectures. High centralization: among those 47, population is intensely concentrated in prefectures in blue letters (see left), especially in Tokyo-to that has 10%+ of …


Checklist: What should be discussed upon new store location decision?

You can download checklist (excel file) from bottom of this page. After a new store opens, sales and profit budget responsibilities of the store would be taken by Store Operations team. It is vital for Store Development team and Store Operations team to discuss deeply, build trust and form consensus about various issues of the candidate site in order for the new store to achieve a success after opening. The CHECKLIST below shows common discussion items that should be discussed internally upon making a decision on new store location. Store Development and Store Operations should discuss these discussion items from the same perspective and forecast the new store sales. Then, …


Trade area size per store changes over time

Retailers should periodically redefine the trade area size When the 1st store of a foreign new brand have “Gyouretsu” (long customer waiting line) in front of the store, trade area size of the store is spread through a wide area. However, “Gyouretsu” will disappear sooner or later, and eventually, trade area size per store shrinks – smaller and smaller, day by day – until it falls into a certain size. Many people standing in “Gyouretsu” upon the 1st store opening are coming from outside of the market; some traveled 3 hours by train or might even took an airplaine to get to the store just to become the brand’s honored …


How “cannibalization” impact should be analyzed upon new site evaluation

What is “Cannibalization”? When a new store location candidate site is discovered in the neighborhood of an existing store, “cannibalization” issue would almost always discussed within the company. “Cannibalization” literally means eating the sales and the customers of own company. However, this “cannibalization” discussion is often troublesome as the reality of “cannibalization” is not yet clear. Therefore, it is often observed that Store Development team (who want to open the new store) and Store Operation team (who need to take responsibility of sales and profit of the new store after opening) discuss on different planes that never get to anywhere, ending up arguing emotionally and illogically When a brand opens …


Glossary of terms used in Japanese retail chain store development projects

A Construction / B Construction / C Construction This terminology is often heard when a tenant opens a store in a commercial facility (e.g. shopping center) or a multiple-tenant building; it’s an itemization of new-store-related construction work from the perspective of “who pays” and “who constructs” the work. Definitions may vary by site, but commonly, A/B/C constructions are itemized as follows. A Construction: construction work that the building owner pays and constructs; e.g. building structure, common use space or aisle, etc. B Construction: construction work that the tenant requests, the tenant pays, and the building owner constructs; e.g. sign attached to the building, water supply and drainage work, waterproofing work, …

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