..PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III on Thursday received Japan's richest businessman Tadashi Yanai in Malacañang.
Yanai, founder and president of Fast Retailing Co. Ltd, is currently in the country for the opening of the first Uniqlo store at the SM Mall of Asia on Friday.
Yanai was accompanied by wife Teruyo; Naoki Otoma, Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. chairman and chief executive officer; Katsumi Kubota, Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. Chief operating officer and Teresita Sy-Coson, vice chairman officer of the SM Investments Corporation during the courtesy call.
Also present were Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary Cristino Panlilio and DTI Assistant Secretary Fe Reyes.
Yanai said they are planning to open 50 Uniqlo stores in the Philippines in three years.
The specialty retailer Uniqlo has enjoyed strong growth by offering high-quality casual wear at reasonable prices based on its SPA (Specialty store retailer of Private label Apparel) business model, which
spans product design, manufacture, distribution and retail.
First venturing into international markets in 2001, Uniqlo now has worldwide operations that include the U.K., China, Hong Kong, South Korea, the United States, France, Singapore, Russia, Taiwan and Malaysia.
In 2011, the company opened global flagship stores in Taipei and Seoul, and in New York's prestigious Fifth Avenue, as part of plans to grow business worldwide.
As of the end of February 2012, the group boasts around 849 stores in Japan and 234 stores in other markets overseas. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)