Marimekko is continuing to underpin its position in the Asia-Pacific region, which is the company’s second-largest market area after Finland. Taiwan is opened up as a new market, and the network of Marimekko stores is also expanded in China and Japan.
At the end of August, Marimekko signed an importing and distribution contract with Yun San Corporation of Taiwan, which is the distributor for a number of famous European and Japanese fashion brands.
The objective is to open a total of five Marimekko stores and shop-in-shops in Taiwan by the end of 2018. The first, a two-storey Marimekko store comprising roughly one hundred square metres, will be opened by Yun San in the middle of November 2013 in Taipei, a city with 2.6 million inhabitants.
Mika Ihamuotila, President and CEO: "Taiwan is a new and very appealing market for Marimekko. In recent years, Taipei has grown into a highly attractive city from the retailing viewpoint, and we believe that there and in the rest of Taiwan there will be plenty of demand for Marimekko's colourful and joyous design.
"Our sales in Japan have for a long time taken a very favourable trend, and our position in eastern Asia, which is a region of enormous opportunities, has been further strengthened as new stores have opened in China and elsewhere. The decision we made a few years ago to seek international growth in Asia in particular has proved to be very wise."
Hong Kong's second Marimekko store will open at the beginning of November in the Elements mall in Kowloon. Elements is the biggest shopping mall in the area, attracting customers not only with its wide range of globally famous fashion and design brands but also its unique architecture.
The aim of the cooperation agreement signed by Marimekko and the Hong Kong company Sidefame in 2012 is to open a total of 15 Marimekko stores in China by the end of 2016. The first store was opened in Hong Kong in May 2012, and this year two stores have been opened, one in Beijing in June and the other in Shanghai in August.
In mid-November, Look, Marimekko's partner in Japan which has already started 25 successful stores, will open the fourth Marimekko store in Osaka, in the fashion-oriented Namba Parks mall in the Namba district, which is famous as a lively entertainment centre.
The store's range will focus on Marimekko's most attractive new products and children's clothes. Earlier this year, Look opened a Marimekko store in Kagoshima on Japan's southernmost main island Kyushu as well as a shop-in-shop concentrating on interior products and bags in the flagship store of the country's best-known department store chain Isetan in Tokyo. Since the August opening of the shop-in-shop, Tokyo has had no fewer than eight Marimekko stores.
In the Asia-Pacific region, new Marimekko stores have also been opened this year in South Korea, Guam and New Zealand. Marimekko has also expanded its operations in its other main markets, Northern Europe and North America. The main thrust in expansion has been on opening retailer-owned Marimekko stores and shop-in-shops. Moreover, the company has focused on developing the business of the stores it opened in 2012.