Uniqlo owner eyes nearly $12-B in sales

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Oct 03 2012 04:55 PM | Updated as of Oct 04 2012 01:26 AM

TOKYO - The operator of Japan's cheap-chic clothing giant Uniqlo looks set to book annual sales worth almost 1 trillion yen this business year, a report said Wednesday, as it embarks on a rapid overseas expansion.

Fast Retailing is expected to report 930 billion yen ($11.9 billion) sales in the 12 months to August when it gives its results this month, the daily Nikkei said, adding the figure was 10 percent up on last year.

Sales will continue to boom over the next 12 months, the paper said, taking the company well past one trillion yen.

The Nikkei did not give figures for profits, but in its first half earnings report in April, Fast Retailing said net profit surged 38.7 percent on-year, to 57.8 billion yen while total sales in the period rose 14.9 percent to 525.5 billion yen.

The retailer is looking to open dozens of new outlets in Japan and up to 300 outlets in the rest of Asia and in other foreign markets, the report said.

Uniqlo already has huge stores in several major world cities, including New York, London and Paris, but has now shifted its focus to rapidly growing Asia, operating in Shanghai, Taipei and Seoul.

Fast Retailing has set a goal of becoming the world's largest fast-fashion business in 2020.

Overseas sales account for about 70 percent of its sales in the past year to August, the Nikkei said, adding that it plans to enter into the Australian market within three years.

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