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Japan: Uniqlo Owner's Profit Nearly Reaches Record Highs

The Japanese company Fast Retailing, which operates a chain of clothing and footwear stores Uniqlo, reported its results for the first quarter of fiscal year 2021 (September - November 2020). During this period, the company managed to increase profits by 23% compared to last year, to 113.1 billion yen (US$ 1.09 billion). Fast Retailing nearly hit a record two years earlier, when the company reached 113.9 billion yen in profit.

The owner of Uniqlo achieved such results due to two factors. First, in the fall of last year, the company fully focused on the markets of Japan and China, which were less affected by the coronavirus pandemic than other countries. Fast Retailing operates 800 stores in China, about the same as in the Japanese domestic market. Online sales of the retailer in Japan grew by almost one and a half times in the quarter, reaching 15% of the total. Second, Uniqlo and its lower-cost textile discount subsidiary, GU, have driven the increased demand during the quarantine for comfortable homewear: loose-fitting T-shirts and stretch pants. Such clothes are especially popular with students and those working from home.

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