Popular Japanese lifestyle brand MUJI opened its largest Southeast Asian outlet in Singapore on Friday (21 July), located on the first floor of Plaza Singapura shopping mall.
The outlet, which measures over 1,600 sq m, features special services and concepts that are exclusive to the flagship outlet. These include a custom-embroidery service and an open community space called “Open MUJI”, where customers can look out for upcoming talks and workshops, among others.
Customers can also dine at the flagship outlet, which houses the brand’s F&B arm, “Cafe&Meal MUJI”. The 70-seater dining space offers beverages, desserts and meals, including a Pork Katsu Donburi and Butter Curry Cheese Baked Chicken Rice, which are exclusive to this outlet.
The brand now has 423 stores outside of Japan, which is more than the total number of shops in its home country. The flagship outlet is also MUJI’s 11th store in Singapore.
Look out for an extensive collection of clothing and home furniture in comparison to its other stores. “ReMUJI” is a section within the store that offers clothes recycled from unsold garment items that are re-dyed and upcycled. Meanwhile “IDEE”, a furniture brand owned by the same parent company Ryohin Keikaku Group, has a section within the store offering home furniture, decor and houseware.
This is MUJI’s first flagship outlet since it launched in Singapore in 1995. When asked what took the brand so long to open a flagship here, the parent company’s director and general manager of South, West Asia and Oceania business division, Yuki Yamamoto, shared that the company needed time to expand their product range, among other reasons.
During an interview with Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore during the store preview, Yamamoto, 48, explained in Japanese, “With the rising trend of e-commerce, it’s good to bring new concepts to brick-and-mortar stores. This outlet also serves as a place of inspiration for other stores in Singapore.”
Yamamoto also shared that the company has invested almost double the cost as compared to other individual outlets. “Japan and Singapore lifestyle is almost the same. Singapore is a modern city and the people here are open to trying new products. But they also like to stick to buying basic items,” he said.
MUJI is one of the pioneering Japanese lifestyle brands in Singapore and continues to stay relevant amid increasing competition over the years with newcomers such as Daiso, and Tokyu Hands.
When asked what might be MUJI’s secret to its longevity here, Yamamoto said that Singaporeans tend to appreciate “slow” instead of “fast” companies. “They seem to prefer brands that grow gradually, and at the same time produce good quality products,” he said. Similar to how life should be, Yamamoto agrees that business is also about taking your time.
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