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Uniqlo to test new prototype roadside store at Maebashi, Japan

Uniqlo, Asia’s largest fashion brand, said it will open a new store in Maebashi (Gunma Prefecture in  Japan) on Friday.

Uniqlo said the store will serve as a pilot for the Japanese retailer’s future highway and roadside outlets.

“This new store represents a prototype for global roadside Uniqlo stores going forward, and features innovative design elements that are a first-of-their-kind for the company,” the company said in a press release on Wednesday.

The new Maebashi roadside store is designed by Kashiwa Sato, Creative Director of Samurai Inc. and one of Japan’s leading creators.

The “new roadside store concept that both appeals to customers and embodies the Uniqlo philosophy of contributing to the development of a prosperous society and realization of a better world,” the press release said.

Uniqlo said the upcoming store has been designed with a range of energy-saving features and to provide a gamut of other lifestyle services.

The concept store would serve as a retailing point as well as an avenue for people to socialize.

“With the new Maebashi Minami IC Store, we have created a new type of Uniqlo, where customers can both shop for our clothing, as well as gather and connect with each other,” said Masahiro Endo, Group Executive Officer of the Tokyo-based retailer that is part of Fast Retailing Co. Uniqlo is the largest and the flagship label of eight brands that Fast Retailing operates. Other brands are GU, Theory, PLST (Plus T), Comptoir des Cotonniers, Princesse tam.tam, J Brand and Helmut Lang.

Also Read: Human touchpoint is extremely important for us, says Tomohiko Sei, CEO, Uniqlo India

With an annual sales of $22 billion in 2022, Uniqlo is one of the top three global fashion brands along with Spain’s Zara and Sweden-based Hennes & Mauritz (H&M). Masahiro said reducing energy consumption was also the primary aim while developing the store and the various technical and design features utilized represent meaningful steps towards meeting Uniqlo’s 2030 greenhouse gas reduction targets.

“Going forward, we look forward to using this store as a prototype for our new roadside stores globally,” Endo added.

Uniqlo operates more than 2,400 stores in various markets in Japan, Asia, Europe and North America.

In 2019, Uniqlo made its India debut from Ambience Mall in Vasant Kunj in New Delhi with a 35,000 sq ft store spanning over three floors.

Recently, Uniqlo also opened a highway store in Zirakpur. The 10,965 sq. ft. store is located at Dhillon Plaza, Zirakpur, Punjab and it is a standalone store located alongside a highway.

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