Jun. 26, 2014
Sumitomo Corporation

New Investment in Singapore-based AWCGOpening a Japanese fashion EC mall for the ASEAN market this fall

Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan; President and CEO: Kuniharu Nakamura) hereby announces its capital participation in AWCG PTE. LTD. (Head Office: Singapore; CEO: Kenji Chigira, hereinafter “AWCG”), a subsidiary of Apparel-Web, Inc. (Head Office: Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan; CEO: Kenji Chigira; hereinafter “Apparel-Web”), a company which provides fashion apparel companies with web marketing service and assists their overseas business expansion. AWCG operates JRunway, a concept shop that offers Japanese fashion labels in Singapore.

With the goal of bringing Japanese fashion to the world, AWCG was established in August 2011 to support Japanese fashion brands expand business overseas. The company opened the concept shop JRunway in October 2012 on the first floor of Plaza Singapura, a shopping mall located in the Orchard central shopping district in Singapore. The store is popular among local shoppers as a place where they can experience Japanese young culture as represented by Shibuya and Harajuku fashion styles. Within just over one year of its opening, the store’s official Facebook page received more than 260,000 likes, over 50,000 shoppers purchased products at the store, and the awareness of JRunway is already at 37.3 percent (Note).

Following the success of the shop, JRunway is going to open an online store named “Shop.JRunway” soon. The online store is initially launched as a site where shoppers can buy the same products that are sold at the JRunway shop. This fall, the website will add the function as a “cross-border” EC mall, which offers a wider variety of products with different tastes, and products can be ordered directly from Japan to consumers in the ASEAN region. AWCG has signed a service agreement with Singapore Post Limited (Head Office: Singapore; Group CEO: Dr. Wolfgang Baier; hereinafter “Singapore Post”), a postal service operator in Singapore, who will handle the logistics from Japan to the ASEAN region. This arrangement allows Japanese apparel companies who receive orders on Shop.JRunway to sell their products throughout the ASEAN market, simply by delivering the products to a designated warehouse in Japan.

AWCG will utilize the collective strengths of Sumitomo Corporation and Apparel-Web, and provide a multi-channel platform for Japanese apparel companies. AWCG aims to achieve 15 billion yen (approximately 190 million Singapore Dollars) in net sales within five years.

For Sumitomo Corporation, the expansion of retail business in the ASEAN region is one of its medium-term strategies. By using the retailing expertise that has been accumulated through business in Japan, we have already launched the TV shopping business in Thailand, the fashion brand retail businesses in Singapore and Taiwan, and EC business in Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and China. Sumitomo Corporation aims to further expand its retail business in the ASEAN region, whose growing middle-class are expected to increase their capital spending, through this investment in AWCG.

Note: Based on an Internet survey conducted in January 2014 (of 1,083 male and female consumers in their 20s to 40s residing in Singapore)

Representative Kenji Chigira
Head office Singapore
Established on August 4, 2011
Business description Overseas business expansion support for Japanese apparel companies; operation of retail stores; wholesaling
Paid- up Capital  5,849,000 SGD
Shareholder composition Apparel-Web: 50.0%, Sumitomo Corporation: 47.4%, Mizuho Bank: 2.6%
Website name SHOP.JRUNWAY
Website opened on opening soon
Target market Countries outside Japan
Language English
-Apparel-Web, Inc.
Representative Kenji Chigira
Established on January 27, 2000
Business description  Information portals for the apparel industry; web marketing solutions; operation of B2B websites; consulting service
Paid-up Capital 376 million yen
Shareholder composition Kenji Chigira, Innovation Network Corporation of Japan,
URL http://www.apparel-web.co.jp/

- Photos

JRunway, a concept shop

Shop.Jrunway, a fashion EC mall

Corporate Communications Department, Sumitomo Corporation
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