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News - Financial News

02 February 2009
H&M Reports ¥2.1 Billion in Sales for First Two Tokyo Stores
read on >> In its full-year financial report announced on January 29, Swedish fast fashion chain Hennes & Mauritz — aka H&M — announced net sales of over ¥21 billion (198 million Swedish kronor) for its first two Tokyo stores in Ginza and Harajuku, for the period up until the end of November 2008. According to the offical press release, these results "surpassed the company’s high expectations and were H&M’s most successful store openings ever."

H&M will open two more Tokyo stores in 2009: Shibuya and Shinjuku.
29 January 2009
Fast Retailing Announces Take-over Bid for Link Theory Holdings
read on >> On January 28, Fast Retailing — parent company to mass retailer Uniqlo — announced a take-over bid to make equity method affiliate Link Theory Holdings into a wholly-owned subsidiary. Fast Retailing's board voted to actualize the plan through acquiring outstanding common stock, new share subscription rights, and warrant bonds. Link Theory Holding's board has agreed to the buyout.

The move comes in light of Link Theory Holdings' worsening financial situation. The company projects losses of ¥4.3 billion for the February 2009 midterm balance sheet. Fast Retailing hopes to use the buyout as a way to deepen its commitment to Link Theory's business, ultimately restoring growth potential and profitability.

Fast Retailing first invested into Link Theory in 2004 and currently owns 32.32% of its common stock.

Link Theory Holdings operates global brands Theory and Helmut Lang.

20 January 2009
National Department Store Sales Down for Twelfth Straight Year
read on >> On January 19, the Japan Department Store Association (JDSA) released the national department store sales figures for 2008, and they were not pretty. Net sales for the 91 companies and 280 stores in the association was ¥7,813 billion — a -4.3% decrease from the previous year. This was the twelfth consecutive year of sales decline.

Tokyo and Osaka area department stores saw nearly identical drops in revenue at -4.2% and -4.1%, respectively. Nagoya meanwhile,experienced a -7.8% decline for the year.

In terms of individual months, only February brought an increase on the previous year, at the meager 0.9%. All other months had fewer sales than 2007.

Apparel in particular was down -6.2% nationwide, -6.4% in Tokyo. Womenswear declined -6.7% nationwide and -7.0% in Tokyo.

The JDSA placed most of the blame on the worsening economy and weakened consumer expenditure.
19 January 2009
Itochu to Invest in Chinese Fashion Conglomerate Shan Shan
read on >> Japanese trading company Itochu Corportation has announced a large-scale investment into Chinese fashion conglomerate Shan Shan. After acquiring 28% of Shan Shan's shares — an investment estimated at ¥10 billion — Itochu will make the company an equity-method affiliate.

Itochu hopes to use the partnership with Shan Shan to better expand its brand business into China. Shan Shan will gain from Itochu's global network and know-how.

3% of the 28% will be held by Itochu's Chinese subsidiary Itochu (China) Holding Co., Ltd.

The contracts for the deal will be formally signed in mid-January.
15 January 2009
Sanei International Revises Projections Downwards
read on >> Apparel giant Sanei International has revised its year-end consolidated earning projections downwards for the fiscal year ending in August 2009. The company now expects a ¥800 million net loss for the full term.

The revised projection for net sales is ¥115 billion — a ¥10 billion decrease from initial projections. The company also expects a ¥991 million appraisal loss on securities investments.
13 January 2009
Link Theory Holdings Revises Projections Downwards
read on >> Link Theory Holdings — parent company to brands Theory and Helmut Lang — has revised its initial earning projections downwards for the fiscal year ending in August 2009. The company originally expected a net profit of ¥250 million, but now projects net losses of an unspecified degree.

The company reported relatively strong sales in Japan, but Japan only makes up around one-third of the company's total consolidated revenue. The European and American markets, on the other hand, have seen massive drops in sales due to the recessionary environment. Link Theory believes these conditions will continue throughout the year.

The first quarter earnings were as follows:
 • Net sales: ¥16 billion (a 11.7% decline from the previous fiscal year)
 • Operating profits: ¥1.166 billion (a 38.1% decline from the previous fiscal year)
 • Normal profits: ¥400 million (a 61.1% decline from the previous fiscal year)
 • Net profits: ¥230 million (a 98.2% decline from the previous fiscal year)
13 January 2009
Onward Holdings Revises Year-End Projections Downwards
read on >> Onward Holdings has revised its full term earning projections downwards for the fiscal year ending in February 2009 — the third time since the intial projections last year. Most dramatically, the initial projection for a ¥12.4 billion net profit has now been revised to a ¥16.9 billion net loss.

Onward blames the underperformance on the sluggish consumer market, a ¥3.259 billion currency exchange loss in the third quarter, and a ¥17.882 billion appreciation loss on investment securities.

The latest projections are as follows:
 • Net sales: ¥263 billion (a 8.4% decline from the previous fiscal year)
 • Operating profits: ¥10.8 billion (a 42% decline from the previous fiscal year)
 • Normal profits: ¥6.9 billion (a 71.4% decline from the previous fiscal year)
16 December 2008
Point Acquires Trans Continents Trademark
read on >> Apparel maker Point — home to popular youth brands Lowry's Farm, Hare, and Jeanasis — has acquired the trademark of select shop Trans Continents (TC) from original rightsholder T.C. Terminal.

In April, catalog sales company Image Holdings — the parent company to T.C. Terminal —  announced the liquidiation of Trans Contients in response to the brand's ¥800 million losses. Image acquired Trans Continents and T.C. Terminal in 2004, but the catalog sales firm did not have the retail know-how to made Trans Continents profitable. The liquidation will continue on as planned, with Point using only the brand name and rebuilding the brand within their own retail and distribution networks.

Point will relaunch Trans Continents in February 2009, with the first store slated for Kawasaki Lazona. TC will continue to target men and women in their 30s.

15 December 2008
Sanyo Shokai Revises Earnings Projections Downward
read on >> Apparel giant Sanyo Shokai has lowered its earning projections for the fiscal year ending in December 2008. This is Sanyo's third projection adjustment for the year.

Total consolidated revenue for FY2008 was revised ¥6 billion downwards (-4.3%) from the October adjustment to ¥132 billion. Projections for operating profits were almost halved — down 37.5% to ¥5 billion. Similarly, normal profit projections were adjusted downwards 38.1% to ¥5.2 billion. Net profits are now expected to stand at ¥2.3 billion — a 65.2% drop from the original figures offered in October.

Sanyo Shokai blamed the lower projections on the global financial crisis' impact on consumer spending, a reduced value in securities investments, and the cancellation of an April contract with Haseko Corporation to buy the Shiomi Product Center and Shiomi Building. The latter transaction was slated to bring Sanyo Shokai a ¥6.7 billion sales profit, but instead, the company will only register an extraordinary profit of ¥3.87 billion from the cancellation fee.
09 December 2008
Baycrews Group Sees Big Increases in Consolidated Income
read on >> Apparel retail company Baycrews — parent to select shops Journal Standard, Édifice, and Deuxième Classe — has reported large increases in consolidated earnings for its fiscal year ending in August 2008. The company saw ¥48.591 billion in total sales — a 15.9% increase over the previous year. Normal profits stood at ¥3.893 billion — a 24.5% increase.

Womenswear — which accounts for 69% of the company's earnings — increased 15.6%. Although the existing store base for apparel saw only a 4.7% increase in sales, the store's accessory shops Barrault (bags) and Hirob (watches) both experienced a 69.9% rise in revenue.

In terms of specific stores, the "natural" style of Journal Standard did particularly well with women, and men's select shop Édifice also had a good year.

Baycrews now operates 141 stores (124 apparel / 17 lifestyle).
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