Uniqlo to launch in Italy in 2019 with Milan debut
Uniqlo is continuing its global rollout and on Monday announced plans to enter the Italian market in 2019. Next autumn, it will open its first store in Milan, on Piazza Cordusio, in the heart of the historical city and within walking distance to Piazza del Duomo. The new store will offer LifeWear for men, women, and kids over three levels.
The building was designed by Francesco Bellorini and Ippolito de Stani in the early 1900s and the Uniqlo store will cover 1,500 square metres with a basement, ground floor and first floor.
The opening will follow the brand’s “successful” move into the Netherlands with just one store in September this year, and its plan to open in Denmark next spring.
Despite this trio of openings, Italy will still only be Uniqlo’s 10th European market with the retailer having taken its individual country launches slow and steady after an earlier approach to Europe over a decade ago saw it closing some of the locations it had opened. Since then it has proceeded extremely cautiously, ensuring that the conditions are right before it enters a new market.
As of the end of Q3, it had 74 stores in Europe, including 32 in Russia, 26 in France, 11 in the UK, nine in Germany and a handful in Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands.
Tadashi Yanai, chairman and CEO of parent company Fast Retailing said that “Milan is one of the world's most important and well-respected fashion capitals, enjoying a long-standing culture of craftsmanship as well as sophisticated and elegant design. With this incredible store location, and our LifeWear concept, we hope that the Milanese public and international visitors will embrace Uniqlo and make it theirs.”
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