X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

KENT, WA-Turning the Japanese onto outdoor gear proved to be a tougher task than REI anticipated. Citing price-conscious consumers, costly upkeep and a desire to concentrate on U.S. expansion, the Seattle-based company says it intends to close its Tokyo store and Japanese Web site.

The move will cost 145 employees their jobs, of which 116 are in Japan and 29 at REI headquarters in Kent. Among the laid off were two top managers in the merchandising division.

REI, which operates as a cooperative, posted an $11.4 million loss last year. It was the first since the outdoor retailer opened its doors in 1938, and company executives attributed the loss, in part, to sagging sales at the Tokyo store.

REI executives could not be reached for comment as of deadline today, but in a statement released by the company, Dennis Madsen, REI’s chief executive officers, said eliminating losses in Japan would allow the company to redirect its resources toward expanding stores and its Web site in the United States.

“REI Japan succeeded in all ways except financial performance,” Madsen said. “The shopping experience was exceptional and true to REI, the staff was fantastic, and we created a new style of retailing in Japan.”

REI opened its Japanese store in April 2000 as the anchor tenant in the Grandberry Mall, a new shopping center located in the suburb of Minami Machida.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 3 free articles* across the ALM subscription network every 30 days
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

Dig Deeper

GlobeSt. NET LEASE Awards 2020Event

These awards honor the industry's most influential and knowledgeable real estate executives from the net lease sector.

Get More Information
 

GlobeSt

Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.