Tuesday, 1 September 2009

New Hope For Japan’s Struggling Luxury Industry? – 1/9/2009

Let's hope the newly elected Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, can really work on the Japanese economy, which has been struggling for several years.

To sight a recent example that is typical of what is happening in Japan in the luxury areas: "Mitsukoshi, the iconic Japanese department store operator, plans to slash its workforce by about one-sixth to cope with dwindling demand for luxury goods.”

This article, written by AFP, also went on to say, "Mitsukoshi, which is often compared to Britain's Harrods or US-based Bloomingdale's, will shoulder the costs by selling one of its stores in Tokyo which closed in May."

Is this the sign that Japan has reached its peak in the luxury consumer market? With an ageing population as one of the many issues facing Japan the new government has promised to reverse the “crippling fertility decline”, which has led to Japan's decreasing population, according to an article in The Australian "Pivotal Moment In Japan’s History" by Foreign Editor Greg Sheridan. Naturally, this will all take time and we wonder if there will be other casualties until the big ship is slowly turned around.

Article by: Melinda O'Rourke

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Melinda O’Rourke is the founder and Director of MO Luxury, a dynamic, Sydney-based management firm specialising in luxury brands and services. Melinda and her associates at MO work with local and international brands across prestige retail, fashion, fine jewellery, timepieces and specialised services. Melinda is well-connected, well-read, and well-versed in the demands of the luxury market and its client base. Her advice is firmly based in objectivity and ultimately, accountability. Melinda offers constructive counsel and both strategic and creative thinking and is able to draw upon a strong network of specialised talent to compliment the MO Luxury team as needed. Melinda enjoys excellent industry relationships and is regularly quoted in the business and fashion media. Read more about MO Luxury, www.moluxury.com.au