The Nanfang / Blog

American fashion invades the PRD: Forever 21 now open in Shenzhen

Posted: 10/17/2013 2:40 pm

A slew of American and British stores have been opening the PRD and Hong Kong in the past few years, giving shoppers a whole lot more choice when it comes to fashion.

The latest is American brand Forever 21, which recently threw open its doors at Coastal City mall in Shenzhen.  The 2000-square-foot store is the third shop to open in Mainland China, with the first two in Beijing and Shanghai.  Up until now, those wanting Forever 21 had to hop the border into Hong Kong, but that is increasingly becoming no longer necessary (via SCMP):

“Shenzhen shoppers looking for international fast fashion [high turnover] brands used to love going to shop in Hong Kong,” said Linda Lin Dan, retail services director in Shenzhen for property consultancy Colliers International.

“But since more of these brands began setting up their stores in Shenzhen in recent years … an increasing number of middle-class consumers are staying to shop in Shenzhen.”

Topshop opened a pop-up store in Shenzhen last year, and Topman opened last September. Meanwhile, Shenzhen was also the site for the first Apple store in China outside of Beijing and Shanghai.

There are still some reasons to pop across the border to Hong Kong though… it remains one of the few places in Asia with an Abercrombie and Fitch.


British retailer Topman to launch in China with its first store in Shenzhen

Posted: 08/29/2012 3:41 pm

Riding high on the clothing trail, the team behind Topshop’s successful debut in China is preparing to unleash Topman to eager shoppers in Shenzhen.

We’re told the new store is due to launch on September 28, if not at the start of Golden Week on October 1 to take advantage of holiday sales.

The new Topman, opening next door to Topshop in King Glory Plaza, fills an important hole in the market.  In order to get the go-ahead to launch, it had to overcome trademark issues earlier in the year.

Topshop launched to much fanfare in May, but some fans had to leave with empty bags as the store only stocked female fashions.

Britain’s Arcadia Group, which runs the two franchises, is focused on the mainland market.  It is testing the popularity of the brand with pop-up concept stores it goes against the trend of rival retailers, such as Abercrombie & Fitch, launching their presence in China with flagship stores in Hong Kong.

Also on the Nanfang:


UK retailer Topman faces legal hurdles opening in China

Posted: 05/14/2012 7:22 am

Only days after Topshop threw open its doors in Shenzhen (related Nanfang Studio album here), there’s already rumours of the UK’s Topman fashion chain making the same jump.  But for Topman, opening in the PRC might not be so simple.

A lingerie manufacturer in Zhongshan, Guangdong Province, is preventing the trendy male fashion brand  from joining its older sister, Topshop, on the Chinese high street. According to China’s trademark database, the Topman name was registered to the Zhongshan-based business in 2000. The database also shows the Arcadia Group, who owns the successful British retailer, filed at least three different applications, the first of which was in 2006. A source close to the matter divulged that the issue was nearing a legal resolution, and the obstacle facing the Arcadia Group was being resolved.

International companies are being met at the Chinese border by a number of “brand squatters”; people or companies that buy international brand names within China and wait to cash in when those same companies enter the world’s biggest consumer market, as Britain’s Daily Telegraph revealed in an investigation last month. Unlike in the UK, China’s trademarks operate on a “first-to-register” basis: whoever registers the brand first owns the rights to it.

Topman declined to comment on the trademark matter. The revelation comes as Topshop officially celebrated the opening of its first Chinese store earlier this month. When asked his thoughts about the trademark issue, Ray Lee, the man responsible for bringing Topshop and Topman to the mainland, said only that the issue was “difficult”.

The trademark issue does not appear to be affecting sales in Shenzhen; Topshop announced that over 2,000 people visited the store on its first day.


Fashion alert! Britain’s Topshop ‘pops up’ in Shenzhen

Posted: 05/2/2012 11:40 pm

Hundreds of eager people flocked to Shenzhen’s King Glory Plaza for China’s first Topshop as it opened its doors on Tuesday morning. Throughout the day, the store was packed, proving popular with shoppers queuing to get inside.

Vivien Zao (left) and Lei Sheng Nan (right) holding up their new purchases

As large crowds gathered for the opening, the British fashion retailer was already amassing high levels of interest with more than 4,500 followers on Weibo.

One female shopper almost feinted standing in the long queue to use the changing room. She was determined not to lose her place.

While store manager Jeffrey Zhang said the demand had beaten his expectations, some shoppers had a mixed response to the new store.

Lei Shengnan, 26, from Shenzhen snapped up some purple denim hotpants: “I waited half an hour to use the fitting room but I did because I really like the style. It’s exotic compared to other native Chinese fashion shops.”

Vivian Zao, 24, also from Shenzhen wasn’t as complementary, describing the store as small compared to her Topshop experience in Singapore.

Li Yue from Shanghai

Li Yue, 20, from Shanghai, said: “I think the clothes Topshop produced aren’t good this season. I’m expecting better in Shanghai, but I don’t know if Topshop will open there. I just heard it will.”

With all of the momentum and hype, Topshop’s innovative ‘pop-up’ concept store will be on the move in a couple of months’ time. It’s the first brand of billionaire Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group retail empire to set foot in the greater China region.

The opening is seen as a test ahead of possibly launching more pop-up stores. Beyond that, it expects to open its first flagship store in China next year.

Fei Space’s Ray Lee, who brought the Topshop and Topman brand to China, explained to The Nanfang why he opened up in the Pearl River Delta. “We know the Beijing market, we know the Shanghai market. Shenzhen is a really different market. It’s also a very modern city as opposed to a very traditional one like Shanghai or Beijing.”

The Topshop store

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