Aug 28, 2019
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Ted Baker in Sojitz Infinity Japanese deal, will boost online and department stores

Aug 28, 2019

Ted Baker has announced a new licensing deal for Japanese retail with the UK fashion retailer planning to convert its existing directly-operated business into an exclusive retail license for the Japanese market as of October 1.

Ted Baker

The new partner is Sojitz Infinity and the company said it will “leverage its local market knowledge and expertise to accelerate the long-term growth of Ted Baker in Japan”.

Transaction-related costs will hit Ted Baker’s balance sheet to the tune of around £4 million but the retailer expects the new operating model to have a marginally positive impact on its pre-tax profit in the current financial year, with greater benefits due in future years.

The initial term of the license deal is five years with Infinity set to “drive the long-term expansion of the Ted Baker brand in the region, combining its local expertise, especially within the department store sector, with the proven buying, merchandising and brand-building expertise of Ted Baker.”

When the agreement starts, it means Ted Baker will have 17 retail licence partners around the world.

But why exactly has it decided to convert its business model in Japan? Clearly, it’s seeking faster expansion in the country. The company said that over recent years, it has invested in introducing and developing the brand in the Japanese market and has opened five stores in the territory to build awareness and understanding of the label. “Infinity intends to build on the group's existing store portfolio, expand the concession network and invest in Ted Baker's online presence,” it added.

CEO Lindsay Page said he’s “very excited about the next stage of growth for the Ted Baker brand in Japan. Over recent years, we have invested in introducing Ted Baker to Japanese customers and we are confident that our new Japanese Retail Licence Partner will build on this platform and deliver meaningful long-term growth.”

He added that "we firmly believe that Japan has the long-term potential to be an important market for the Ted Baker brand.”
Following the recently announced Joint Venture in Greater China, this deal completes the reorganisation of the firm’s Asian operations.

Meanwhile Infinity CEO Kohei Ono said the brand “has the potential to appeal to more consumers in this market. Our knowledge and experience in building fashion brands through stores, concessions and online should add value to Ted Baker and we look forward to working together.”

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