Uniqlo is entering the India on its own. It has started talks with mall developers in metros to open stores by next year. Uniqlo, which was earlier in talks with Arvind Brands for a joint venture has decided to set up a wholly-owned subsidiary, like global rival Heinz and Mauritz (H&M). India allows 100 per cent foreign direct investment in single brand retail.

Uniqlo’s interest in India comes at a time when the retailer, which first opened a shop in Hiroshima in 1984, has been expanding its presence outside Japan where it holds a 6.5 per cent share of the apparel market. In its most recent earnings report, the Fast Retailing company posted a record operating profit of $1.57 billion for the year ended August 2017, bolstered by a jump in Uniqlo’s international business.

Uniqlo will join the ranks of fast-fashion brands such as Zara, Forever 21, and H&M to open stores in Asia’s third-largest economy, where fashion retail is a $70 billion business. And here, its range of winter-wear, polos in solid colours, linen shirts, and other minimalistic offerings could well lure legions of young, aspiring shoppers hunting for branded clothing.


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