After planting its first branch 30 years ago at MBK Shopping Centre in downtown Bangkok, Japanese department store chain Tokyu is following the new wave of Japanese retailers flocking to Thailand by sprouting its second outlet in the eastern part of the c
Takashi Hayano, chief executive officer of PT Retail Corp, a 50:50 joint venture of Bangkok-Tokyu Department Store Co and Paradise Retail, said yesterday that the sales target for the first 12 months was set at Bt700 million-Bt900 million.
The new Bt400 million Tokyu store occupies 13,000 square metres on two floors of the Paradise Park shopping centre, a joint development of MBK and Siam Piwat.
Double the purchasing power
Unlike the MBK branch that has foreign tourists as a major visitor group, the Paradise store expects nearly 100 per cent Thai customers. Also unlike MBK, it has no food division.
Tokyu thought it was a new challenge to expand from the downtown location to the suburbs, but it considered the area as having high potential with customers who have double the purchasing power of the average in the capital, new residential projects and mass transit projects.
"We have seen the potential of eastern Bangkok and we have our good partner here," he said.
The Bangkok-Tokyu Department Store Paradise Park features women’s and men’s clothing, children’s fashions, cosmetics, sportswear, travel gear, accessories and stationary departments.
"Every category will have two to three Japanese brands. After this we intend to add two to three more Japanese brands to each category. But this depends on the requirements of our customers," he said.
Among the major Japanese labels are Miss Kyouko, tailor and handmade shoes, Syunsoku children’s shoes, and About 79 and Plus Plus women’s clothing and accessories lines by world-renowned designer Ken Nakamura.
Onitsuka Tiger has a 80m2 space, making it the largest outlet for the shoe brand at any Thailand store.
Paradise Park welcomes 30,000 visitors on workdays and 40,000 a day on weekends.
Tokyu would consider opening more branches with the same Thai partners in the future, if the location is good, but it has no site under special consideration at present.
"We want to make it the best here first," he said.
The operation of the Paradise store was postponed from last quarter to adjust the interior design to cater to local tastes, he said.
Last October, high-end Japanese department store operator Takashimaya said it would open its first outlet in Thailand in 2017 as the core tenant of Icon Siam, a mega shopping and residential complex being developed by Siam Piwat and Charoen Pokphand Group.
Aeon is also rapidly expanding its MaxValu 24-hour mini supermarkets here.