Giordano International Ltd. (0709.HK) said it plans to open 1,000 new stores in mainland China under a new brand name, Beau Monde (BM), focusing on the affordable fashion market, Ming Pao Daily reported Thursday, citing Peter Lau, chairman of the Hong Kong-based apparel retailer.
The first of such stores opened in Shenzhen a week ago, with its decor and product positioning resembling those of Japanese casual wear manufacturer UNIQLO.
Sales performance of the new store has surpassed that of the original store under the Giordano brand, Lau was quoted as saying.
The BM brand is targeting the mass market, which is very price-sensitive, Lau said. Most of the products come with a basic design, loose fitting and are priced between 29 to 99 yuan (US$4.65 to US$15.88).
At present, the company has three BM stores each in Shenzhen and Guangzhou, but plans to launch about 1,000 BM stores in five years. Giordano had 2,642 stores at the end of 2013.
There are no cashiers’ desks at BM stores, as shop assistants check out customers’ items via their smartphones, while receipts are printed out via Bluetooth transmission. Lau said the new payment procedures are more efficient and will enhance interaction between store staff and customers.
Lau also said the worst time for retail business is over, and he expects sales to slowly pick up in 12 months, while cost of business is stabilizing.
He said products purchased online will account for about 30 percent of its overall sales in 10 years’ time.
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