I REMEMBER Uniqlo very well. It was the brand of a polo shirt I received as pasalubong from a Japanese friend way back in the early 2000s.
Everyone would agree that this apparel brand has been a favorite pasalubong from relatives and friends working in Japan or have visited that country every time they return home in the Philippines, be it fashion wear for kids, teens and adults, male and female alike.
Indeed, Uniqlo has become a favorite shop store among Filipinos in Japan, the reason it entered into partnership with Henry Sy-controlled SM Retail for its expansion in the Philippines in 2012.
In June of the same year, retail giant SM Supermall opened Uniqlo's first store in the country at the SM Mall of Asia with a promise to make it a leading fashion wear brand by year 2020, targetting to open at least 200 branches.
Since then, the Japanese fast fashion retailer Uniqlo continued to massively expand with 36 branches now operating in different key cities in the Philippines, most of which are in Metro Manila.
Five years after it established its maiden store in the country, Uniqlo announced it is finally stepping foot on the island of Mindanao, at SM Lanang Premier in Davao City, where the brand's 37th store and the first in Mindanao will be opened.
The announcement indeed made Dabawenyos to get excited, especially the fashionistas, who are fond of the brand. For sure, shoppers are expecting a different shopping experience in Davao City with the store's opening.
Uniqlo is known for its high quality designed wardrobe essentials made with innovative fabrics at a very affordable price.
But before it formally opens its doors on May 26, SM and Uniqlo will hold on Wednesday, May 24, the Mindanao launch, an exclusive event for media and very important guests to have a glimpse of what's in store for Dabawenyos.
Guests will be toured within the 1,200 square meter space occupied by the store at the ground level, near the main entrance of SM Lanang.
Uniqlo's SM Lanang branch is one of the three stores that are set to open in Mindanao. On June 2, the store's 38th branch will be opened at SM City Ecoland, also in Davao City. By end of June, the 39th store will be opened at SM Cagayan de Oro Downtown Premier.
"We are committed to growing our business in Mindanao, and look forward to delighting our customers in this region for years to come...We aim to make the lives of the Filipinos better through our innovative and high-quality Uniqlo Life Wear pieces," Uniqlo Philippines chief operating officer Katsumi Kubota was quoted as saying in earlier reports.
Uniqlo stores showcase a full line up of Uniqlo Life Wear, an innovative, high-quality clothing collection that is universal in design and comfort made for everyone.
Also available are Uniqlo's Heattech and Airism, the brand's proprietary technology clothing lines. Airism is Uniqlo's line of functional innerwear that solves a variety of discomfort by controlling sweat. The clothing line features quick-drying technology that keeps skin smooth and dry when perspiring. Meanwhile, the Heattech collection is an innerwear line that features heat retaining properties to keep the wearer warm and a soft tecture to keep the wearer comfortable.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on May 24, 2017.
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