25 February 2008
Super Brand Wins Exclusive Importing Contract for Calvin Klein Collection
Leather line to hit Japan in Autumn 2008 read on >>

Tokyo-based import/seller Super Brand has signed an exclusive import and sales contract to distribute Calvin Klein Collection's leather line in Japan from Autumn 2008. Super Brand has been contracted to provide general agency services for Calvin Klein's Italian manufacturer Pelletterie 1907.

The first product offering from Calvin Klein Collection in Japan will focus on bags for both sexes, sold mostly in top-tier select shops within urban areas. Other leather goods are to follow.

Sales expectations are set at 400 million JPY by the third year.  

Keywords: Calvin Klein
20 February 2008
MFC to Handle Sales for Essentiel Antwerp
Belgian brand to hit Japan in late 2008 read on >>

Osaka ladies fashion manufacturer MFC will begin to sell Belgian brand Essentiel Antwerp in Japan, starting this autumn.

The brand will be wholesaled to select shops at first, with department store in-shops and directly-managed stores planned for the future. Revenue targets are 400 million JPY for the first year, 700 million JPY for the second, and 1 billion JPY for the third.  

15 February 2008
Caitac International to Import/Sell Belstaff
Italian brand to be sold from AW 08/09 read on >>

Caitac International — importers of Taverniti So Jeans and Mek Denim — will import and handle sales for Italian motorcycle-wear brand Belstaff starting with the AW 08/09 season.

The distribution strategy will focus on wholesaling to select shops and department stores. 

15 February 2008
Chelsea Japan Announces Eighth Premium Outlet
Newest shopping mall to go up in Ami, Ibaraki read on >>

Chelsea Japan — company behind shopping outlets Premium Outlets — has announced the location for its eighth outlet: the town of Ami in Ibaraki, close to both Narita International Airport and the Ken'oudou expressway. The complex will open in Summer 2009.

Total size is estimated at 170,000 square-meters with store space at 20,000 square-meters. Around 100 stores total are expected. Specific tenants have yet to be decided and announced. 

12 February 2008
Roppongi Hills to Change Out 50 Tenants
An almost 20% change planned to revitalize the shopping complex read on >>

Multi-purpose development complex ("city-in-a-city") Roppongi Hills has announced a 20% planned change in tenants, with 50 new shops coming into replace old ones. Ten new shops will start to appear in early March, with more on the way later in April.

The complex hopes to increase the number of jewelry and family-oriented shops as well as stores targeting women in their 30s.

Keywords: Roppongi
12 February 2008
Lanvin to Move Importing to Coronet
Moving from one Itochu subsidiary to another read on >>

Beginning with the AW 08/09 season, Lanvin will change importers from current company CI Garment Service to Coronet. Both importing companies are subsidiaries of trading company Itochu.

A desire to strengthen the retail strategy and increase the number of shops within department stores was cited for the change.

Lanvin currently has three shops in Japanese department stores (plus a "corner), but wholesales to around 40 other stores.

Keywords: Itochu
12 February 2008
Ariga to Helm HermГЁs Japon
Previous CEO Mineaki Saito to become Executive VP of HermГЁs International read on >>

Hermès Japon has a new CEO: Masao Ariga. Previous CEO Mineaki Saito will become Executive Vice-President of Marketing for Hermès International starting on August 1, but stay on the board of Hermès Japon as a non-executive chairman.

Ariga was formerly the CEO of Loewe Japan and the Director of the Louis Vuitton Japan Group. 

Keywords: Hermes
06 February 2008
Misaki to Import, Sell Frankie Morello
Italian brand to hit Japan in autumn 2008 read on >>

Fashion importer Misaki Shoji has signed an exclusive contract to import and sell Milan-based Italian brand Frankie Morello in Japan from AW 08.

Frankie Morello is manufactured and sold by Italian company Gilmar, with whom Misaki have signed the exclusive import and sales contract.

The distribution strategy will first focus on wholesaling Frankie Morello to speciality stores, followed by department store in-store shops within the next few years. 

Keywords: Misaki
06 February 2008
IPGI to Import Ben Sherman
UK casual brand to get greater foothold in the market read on >>

Intellectual Property Global Investments Inc. (IPGI) has signed an exclusive sales and master licensing agreement with British casual brand Ben Sherman. IPGI will begin to handle operations for the brand in Japan from the AW 08 season.

IPGI plans to focus distribution strategy on directly-managed stores, with the first opening in Tokyo later this year. 

06 February 2008
Buffalo Bobs Collects 9.9 Million JPY at Hankyu Men's Opening Weekend
The O-nii-kei brand takes the #2 tenet spot read on >>

According to the Senken Shimbun, "O-nii-kei" brand Buffalo Bobs raked in 9.9 million JPY during last week's opening weekend for the new Hankyu Men's department store in Osaka. These sales made Buffalo Bobs the #2 tenet after Louis Vuitton. The first day revenues alone totaled 4.8 million JPY.

Buffalo Bobs' shop is located on the fifth floor of Hankyu with other reasonably-priced casual brands. As part of opening weekend festivities, the shop invited well-known magazine models from the O-nii-kei fashion magazines to give fans autographs. This apparently attracted the brand's core fans across the Kansai region (Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, and Kobe). 


Keywords: Hankyu , O-nii-kei
04 February 2008
Itochu to Take On Descente as Equity-Method Subsidiary
Trading company to increase ownership of sports apparel giant read on >>

Trading company Itochu Corporation has announced their decision to strengthen the capital alliance with sports apparel giant Descente and make the company an equity-method subsidiary.

Itochu currently owns approximately 15.3% of Descente's shares, but plans to increase this number to 19.5% (20% voting rights) through the acquistion of common shares by mid-year. 

More information on the motivations for this move can be found at this PDF from Itochu's homepage.  

Keywords: Itochu
04 February 2008
Hankyu Men's Building Opens to Much Fanfare
Osaka gets its own premier men's fashion center read on >>

After months of brewing excitement in the fashion community, Hankyu Department Store's new Men's Building opened in Osaka on February 1. The six floor building offers shops from a wide range of high-fashion, street, and O-nii-kei brands, including the first Japanese store for Tom Ford.

The first floor offers a wide range of accesories and the first Louis Vuitton men's-only boutique in Japan, while the basement focuses on Japanese companies' foreign license brands such as Joseph Homme, Burberry Black Label, and ck Calvin Klein. The second floor features mode brands Prada, Y-3, Comme des Garçons, Dior Homme, and the third floor offers upscale international luxury brands such as Tom Ford, Armani, and Salvatore Ferragamo. The fourth floor — titled "Authentic Style" — provides classic preppie apparel from Paul Stuart, J. Press, Polo Ralph Lauren, and Daks. The fifth floor features young casual brands, from O-nii-kei standby Buffalo Bobs to more fashion-forward offerings like Untitled Men and Vivienne Westwood Man.

All in all, this may be the first time in Japan, or even the world, that such a wide range of men's brands has been offered under a single roof. With the success of Isetan Men's in Tokyo, Hankyu is hoping that they will win the same kind of sales in Osaka.

The first day apparently saw around 57,000 visitors, with a total of 180,000 over three days. 

Keywords: Hankyu , Osaka
04 February 2008
Itochu Fashion System Licenses French Kitty
Three year contract to sell American ladies brand read on >>

Itochu Fashion System has signed a three-year exclusive license agreement with American brand managers Mighty Fine to sell its cute, LA-inspired ladies brand French Kitty in Japan. Osaka-based Orizzonti will be the sub-licensee, producing ladies wear and accessories from spring/summer 2008.

Keywords: Itochu


Feb 29 2008
Takao Yajima
An interview with the President of leading shirt-maker Flex Japan
Feb 01 2008
Mie Itoh
We talk with Japanese PR guru Mie Itoh of Wag, Inc. about the mechanics of public relations in Japan
Keywords: Hermes , CanCam , Yohji Yamamoto , Comme des Garçons


Feb 28 2008
Men's Fashion Magazine Breakdown
A guide to the main market segmentation for men's fashion magazines
Feb 01 2008
Over-30 Women's Magazine Breakdown
Part two in our guide to the main market segmentation for Japanese women's fashion magazines


Feb 28 2008
Magazine's Spring Fashion Trends
A look at the trends that Japanese fashion magazines are advocating for Spring
Feb 28 2008
Gyaru Resurgence
Gyaru are no longer "cool," but they aren't going anywhere.
Keywords: Shibuya 109 , gyaru
Feb 01 2008
Slightly-feminine, fashion-conscious male fashion


Feb 28 2008
Tokyo Street Photos for February
Chilly and windy, and yet, spring fashions peek out from under coats and jackets.
Feb 01 2008
Omotesando Street Photos for January
Winter is cold and gray, but that's just an opportunity to wear more layers
Feb 01 2008
Ginza Street Photos for January
Weekday lunch hour crowds in the Ginza
Keywords: Ginza


Feb 10 2008
John Lawrence Sullivan
Sharp high-fashion for men with an athletic touch