Fast Retailing’s English-language Annual Report 2016 recognized with Best of Japan Award at the International ARC Awards

Yamaguchi, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan, 2017-Sep-13 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing Co., Ltd.’s English-language Annual Report 2016 was granted the Best of Japan Award at the 31st Annual International ARC Awards, the world’s largest annual report contest held in the United States. In its business category, Fast Retailing was awarded Gold for Chairman’s Letter, Gold for Interior Design, and Silver in Traditional Annual Reports. Fast Retailing was selected from among a group of nominated finalists to receive the prestigious Best of Japan Award.

The ARC offers Gold, Silver, Bronze and Honors awards across a range of annual report categories, including Overall Excellence, Cover Design, Chairman’s Letter and Interior Design. The reports are evaluated on a specific set of factors, including how succinct and crisp the overall corporate message is, the persuasiveness of the text, the clarity and readability of financial data, the originality of the cover and interior design, and the level of cohesion and consistency of the whole report. Judging is extremely strict, with any report that fails to achieve the required minimum score labeled as “non-applicable”. Winning a Gold Award is even more challenging, and requires the winning candidate to earn over 90 out of a possible 100 points for all the categories. Only 5% of prize-winning reports ever achieve that score.

The International ARC Awards contest is an annual report competition held by MerComm, Inc., an independent awards organization located in the United States. The organization is free from the influence of specific industries, advertisers, or sponsors, with reviews and evaluations carried out in a fair manner by judges from a variety of countries and industries. The competition’s nearly 200 judges work in such fields as the financial industry, private corporations and production industries. This year marked the 31st year of competition, with 1,987 entries from 33 countries. (See ARC’s own reporting of the event: “ARC Awards – the world’s largest annual report competition – announced the Grand Award winners” http://www.mercommawards.com/arc.htm)

Fast Retailing Annual Report 2016

Entire Report Message from the CEO UNIQLO Global Presence

Fast Retailing’s Annual Report 2016 is available on the company’s website.

Japanese : http://www.fastretailing.com/jp/ir/library/annual.html
English : http://www.fastretailing.com/eng/ir/library/annual.html

Fast Retailing and Mitsubishi Corporation to turn UNIQLO (RUS) into a joint corporation

Yamaguchi, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan, 2017-Sep-13 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. and Mitsubishi Corporation have agreed to turn Limited Liability Company UNIQLO (RUS), Fast Retailing’s subsidiary operator of the UNIQLO brand in Russia, into a joint corporation through issuance of new shares to Mitsubishi Corporation.

Fast Retailing first entered the Russian market in 2010. The company has subsequently expanded its UNIQLO network in Russia to a total of 20 stores as of the end of August 2017. Mitsubishi Corporation has been operating in Russia since 1968, and has built presence in a broad range of operations, including energy and automobile sales.

Both companies are committed to jointly expanding UNIQLO (RUS) operations going forward. Making UNIQLO (RUS) into a joint corporation will enable the company to access Mitsubishi Corporation’s long-standing knowledge and experience to help accelerate new store openings, improve awareness of the UNIQLO brand, and build a stronger operational base in the Russian market.

Following the issuance of new shares, Fast Retailing will own a 75% stake and Mitsubishi Corporation will hold a 25% stake in UNIQLO (RUS).

Overview of UNIQLO (RUS)

Company name : Limited Liability Company UNIQLO (RUS)
Business location : 10F, Citydel Business Centre, 9 Zemlyanoy Val., Moscow, 105064, Russian Federation
Operating officer : Taku Morikawa, Group Executive Vice President,
Fast Retailing Co., Ltd.
Investment subscription : 1.31001 billion rubles (approx. 2.5 billion yen)
Current ownership : Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. (100%)
Main business : Retail, and activities relating to the retail of UNIQLO brand casual clothing in the Russian Federation

SOURCE: FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.

 

Fast Retailing to accept interns worldwide starting April

Berlin, Germany, 2017-Feb-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing today (2017.02.10) announces that in April this year it will launch a program to accept long-term interns for offices in 16 countries and territories, including in Japan, China, and the United States. The company plans to offer more than 100 internships in the initial year.

The internships will be in information technology, supply chain, research and development, marketing, public relations, and other areas that interest interns. These individuals will join employees in discussing business challenges to come up with creative and innovative ideas that enable Fast Retailing to become the world’s top apparel company.

The company will begin the program in Japan, accepting interns from April. Depending on the company unit and the nature of the tasks, internships will be one to three months, and individuals will be remunerated for their service. Applicants for the program in Japan must be Japanese or foreign nationals attending tertiary institutions in Japan as undergraduate or graduate students, or have finished the programs in the past three years. Fast Retailing will start accepting applications from Friday, February 10. The company will select successful candidates based on written submissions, interviews, and other evaluation means.

Application times, program starting dates, and business units accepting interns will differ among countries and territories.

More details will be available in the Careers section of the Fast Retailing website.

Source: FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.

Fast Retailing establishes its first denim R&D facility in Los Angeles

Fast Retailing establishes its first denim R&D facility in Los Angeles
Fast Retailing establishes its first denim R&D facility in Los Angeles

 

Berlin, Germany, 2016-Nov-20 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing today (2016.11.18) announces that it has established the DENIM INNOVATION CENTER, the Group’s first facility to focus on research and development of denim fabric, in Los Angeles, California, a city well-known as the home of denim.

The DENIM INNOVATION CENTER aims to bring together specialists in jeans development from premium denim brand J Brand and other Fast Retailing Group companies to develop jeans utilizing innovative technologies and materials, based on the established tradition of jeans. The first project for the facility will be research on jeans for UNIQLO and J Brand. Products for both brands developed at the center will be available from the fall winter 2017 season.

■ Researching jeans in the global hub for denim, to create exceptional products for times

By establishing the DENIM INNOVATION CENTER in Los Angeles, the global hub for information on denim, Fast Retailing will be able to quickly incorporate the essence of current trends in its designs. Focusing on the “3Fs” (Fabric, Fit, and Finish), the key elements in making jeans, the center will develop fabrics with the world’s leading fabric makers, as well as conduct R&D on the latest production technologies, to make jeans that look exceptional and are comfortable to wear.

■ Full range of in-house equipment for product development, for higher quality jeans; R&D also conducted on eco-friendly processing and production technologies

Fast Retailing has previously outsourced the production of samples and other operations to external manufacturers, but with the DENIM INNOVATION CENTER, the company will now be able to manage the entire process in-house. Using the latest equipment, the center will be able to quickly create and evaluate sample products, considerably enhancing the speed and quality of product development.

The center can also be used by contracted producers as a research center, which will increase the integrity of the finished product during actual production. In addition, the facility will focus on environmentally friendly processing and production methods, conducting R&D on chemicals and techniques used for fading and distressing of jeans.

The Role of the DENIM INNOVATION CENTER

1. Fabric: Material development and selection with world-leading fabric manufacturers
The DENIM INNOVATION CENTER’s location in Los Angeles, home to global denim fabric makers, provides a structure for optimal fabric development and selection based on the type of jeans. UNIQLO also has a longstanding partnership with Kaihara Corporation, well-known as a maker of high-quality Japanese denim.
Through cooperation with such world-leading fabric manufacturers, UNIQLO will offer jeans of the highest quality material to people throughout the world.

2. Fit: Collaboration with group company R&D centers to develop the latest, top-quality products
The DENIM INNOVATION CENTER will work in collaboration with R&D centers from various Fast Retailing Group brands to develop denim products that transcend each brand’s limits. The first project will be joint denim research and development between UNIQLO, which has continually analyzed the everyday needs of people around the world from its LifeWear perspective to create jeans, and J Brand, which creates jeans that constantly lead trends. The new facility will integrate the two companies’ expertise on jeans, and accumulate information on global trends and denim development, to develop the latest, highest-quality products for each brand.

3. Finish: Specialists from around the world and cutting-edge processing technologies
Washing and distressing are the most important processes affecting the finish and quality of jeans. The DENIM INNOVATION CENTER is equipped with the world’s most advanced denim processing technologies. The center has gathered together specialists in jeans development from around the world, who conduct repeated tests within the center to create authentic jeans for UNIQLO on a par with premium denim.

Source: FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.

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Fast Retailing and Shima Seiki partner to produce high-quality WHOLEGARMENT® knit products

Berlin, Germany, 2016-Oct-28 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. today (2016.10.27) announces the launch of Innovation Factory Co., Ltd. (“Innovation Factory”), a joint venture with Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd., for the joint development and manufacture of knit products, aimed at establishing a new production system utilizing knit production technologies.

Innovation Factory was originally established in December 2015 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd., producing WHOLEGARMENT®* knitwear. Following the establishment of the joint venture, the company will now produce WHOLEGARMENT® products for the Fast Retailing Group, principally UNIQLO.

1. Purpose for Launching the Joint Venture Company
Fast Retailing is launching a joint venture with Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd., a firm with world-leading knitting machine production technologies, with plans to produce high-quality, value-added WHOLEGARMENT® knit products. In future, the joint venture company is expected to function as the lead factory in the production of innovative knit products for the Fast Retailing Group.

2. Overview of the Joint Venture Company

Name: Innovation Factory Co., Ltd.

Location: Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture

Representative: Michitaka Nakamura

Business content: Manufacture of knit products including seamless knitwear
(WHOLEGARMENT® products).

Invested capital: 400 million yen

Equity share: Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd.: 51%

Fast Retailing Co., Ltd.: 49%

Established: Oct. 27, 2016

3. Overview of Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd.
Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd. was founded in 1962 for the automation of glove knitting machines. Today, the company is a comprehensive mechatronics firm, creating attractive products that expertly combine advanced hardware with exceptional software. It holds the world’s top market share in the computerized flatbed knitting machine field, and is a pioneer in knitting machine manufacturing.

Shima Seiki Group net sales: ¥49,582 million (FY3/16)

*WHOLEGARMENT®is a seamless knit product developed by Shima Seiki Mfg., Ltd.. With seam free construction,
WHOLEGARMENT® yields comfort and draping effect and provides value-added products with greater design
flexibility compared to traditional knitwear products.

Source: FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.

Fast Retailing allocates US $1 million out of USD $10 million fund to UNHCR for emergency assistance in South Sudan

Berlin, Germany, 2016-Oct-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing Co., Ltd. today (2016.10.11) announced that it will allocate US $1 million out of a USD $10 million fund to the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, for emergency assistance to internally displaced people in South Sudan.

Fast Retailing began to collaborate with the UNHCR in 2006 and entered into a global partnership with the agency in 2011- a first for a company headquartered in Asia. In November 2015, Fast Retailing pledged USD$ 10 million over three years starting in 2016, covering the needs of displaced people in Asia to become self-reliant and to respond to acute emergencies around the world. The allocation of US$ 1 million is in response to the on-going humanitarian crisis in South Sudan.

Source: FAST RETAILING CO., LTD.

Fast Retailing supports people seeking asylum in Germany with almost 50,000 items of clothing

Initiative through local partner, Berliner Stadtmission

Berlin, Germany, 2016-Jan-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fast Retailing Co., Ltd., the leading Japanese retailer which operates several international brands, including UNIQLO, today announces the donation of almost 50,000 items of clothing to support people seeking asylum in Germany through the winter. The distribution takes place through UNIQLO’s local partner, Berliner Stadtmission.

The donation includes over 39,000 pieces of new Men’s, Women’s and Kids’ clothing, and around 10,000 items of gently used clothing donated by customers at UNIQLO stores in Europe. Over 50 employees from UNIQLO Germany and abroad will volunteer to sort and distribute the items in refugee camps across Berlin and the surrounding area on Saturday, January 9th, and Sunday, January 10th.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Jean Shein, UNIQLO Global Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, said: “We are very happy to be able to support Berlin’s refugee population with warm clothing during this time of the year as temperatures drop lower and lower. This initiative is the result of thousands of our customers in several countries donating gently used clothing and shows how the sum of many individual actions can have a truly large impact. We are grateful for this support and the warm welcome we have received from Berliner Stadtmission and the many volunteers to implement this initiative as part of our 10 Million Ways to HELP project.”

Fast Retailing began the All-Product Recycling Initiative in 2006, through which UNIQLO in 16 countries and regions collect lightly used clothing from customers for distribution to refugees, displaced people and people in need.

UNIQLO started its local partnership with Berliner Stadtmission in March 2015 including monthly donations of gently used clothing to local people in need as part of the All-Product Recycling Initiative.

The donation taking place this coming weekend is part of the 10 Million Ways to HELP project, a joint initiative between Fast Retailing and its long-standing global partner, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), to provide clothing for a growing number of refugees worldwide. This global campaign launched in UNIQLO stores across 16 countries and regions in October 2015, to encourage customers to donate lightly used UNIQLO clothing.

To date, Fast Retailing has collected and distributed through UNHCR more than 10 million items of lightly used clothing to refugees across 37 countries and regions.

SOURCE: UNIQLO CO., LTD.