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Uniqlo adds shoes to lineup in Japan, some overseas markets

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Customers at the Uniqlo casual-wear chain can now add shoes to their shopping bags along with their AIRism T-shirts and skinny jeans.

[TOKYO] Customers at the Uniqlo casual-wear chain can now add shoes to their shopping bags along with their AIRism T-shirts and skinny jeans.

Uniqlo said on Wednesday it would start selling shoes at all of its Japanese stores, as it looks to attract customers with an expanded lineup of accessories including hats, scarves and bags.

"The addition of shoes allows customers to fully coordinate their outfit according to individual style and preference," the company, owned by Japan's Fast Retailing Co Ltd, said in a statement.

The brand has also begun shoe sales in China and South Korea - its top markets after Japan - as well as in the United States. It plans to begin sales in France from June.

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Uniqlo will gauge demand from those markets before deciding on possible rollouts elsewhere, a company spokesman said.

Overseas growth is key to Fast Retailing's goal of becoming the world's top apparel retailer by 2020 ahead of Zara-owner Inditex SA, Hennes & Mauritz AB (H&M) and Gap Inc. It expects to have more Uniqlo outlets overseas than in Japan by late this year.

The Japan shoe lineup includes slip-on and lace-up sneakers in five colour variations that will sell for 2,990 yen (S$34).

REUTERS

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