Japanese casual clothing retailer G.U. Co. will open in September its first store in South Korea, its fourth overseas market, following the success of renowned sister brand Uniqlo with over 180 outlets in the country.
G.U., a unit of Japan's leading casual wear chain operator Fast Retailing Co., plans to launch an online app for sale of low-priced brand products on Aug. 1 and an online retail site on Sept. 1, ahead of a brick-and-mortar shop with a floor space of about 1,400 square meters opening in Seoul on Sept. 14, according to the Japanese company.
The G.U. brand is known for its big hit at home, 990 yen ($8.9) jeans, achieving sharp growth in sales since its launch in 2006. It has already entered China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Men's, women's and kids' clothing will be available at the planned outlet in the first basement in the Lotte World Mall in the South Korean capital's southern district of Jamsil, which also houses a Uniqlo shop on the first and second floors.
G.U. CEO Yunoki Osamu said at a press conference in Seoul last week that "South Korea is very fashion-conscious, and entering the country is an inevitable step for us." He declined to comment on a sales target and store network expansion plan.
FRL Korea Co., a joint venture between Fast Retailing and Lotte Shopping Co., a local retail outlet operator, will run the G.U. shop.
Since 2005, the local arm, 51 percent owned by Fast Retailing, has increased the number of Uniqlo brand shops to 186 at the end of May this year.
It posted an operating profit of 176.5 billion won ($156 million) in the year to August 2017, up 64.5 percent from the previous year, on sales of 1.24 trillion won, up 4.7 percent, according to its financial statements. (NNA/Kyodo)