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Uniqlo starts exploring in India

Uniqlo a Japanese clothing giant on 4 October opened its first store in India, one of its largest worldwide stores, becoming the latest international retailer to dive into the vast but rough developing market.

Uniqlo India
Figure: The newly opened Japanese retail store Uniqlo, the company’s first Indian store, in New Delhi. Courtesy: AFP

The Uniqlo outlet, one of more than 2,000 across the world, with 35,000 square feet and almost next to global rival H&M in a glamorous mall in New Delhi.

Tadashi Yanai, UNIQLO Founder and Chairman, President and CEO of the Fast Retailing Group, said, “Fast Retailing has long wished to open stores in India in view of the tremendous potential of such a large nation.”

Yanai further spoke about UNIQLO’s experience in India and about their recruitment process which has been going on since the last year, “We began recruiting here at the end of the last year and have been impressed by the exceptional talent, ambition and diligence of the young people we encountered and welcomed aboard.”

Uniqlo is amongst more than 300 international fashion brands likely to open stores in India in the next two years, according to a November report by consultancy McKinsey and the Business of Fashion trade publication.

McKinsey said that the vast nation’s apparel market was forecast to be worth $59.3 billion in 2022, making it the sixth-largest in the world.

Uniqlo so far appears to be selling its clothing at similar price levels as in the United States and Australia, and more expensive than in Malaysia. One signature item, a women’s ultra-light down vest for women, retails at 3,490 rupees ($49.10) compared to $49.90 in the US and 149.90 ringgit ($35.80) in Malaysia.

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