Uniqlo sees U.S. as land of retailing opportunity

Carol's latest Retail Wire weigh-in on Uniqlo's U.S. store ramp-up.

A few years ago, Uniqlo was taking a measured approach to its U.S. expansion (Gap should thank its lucky stars). Now, Uniqlo is putting pedal to the metal, complete with fascinating where-are-they-now talent grabs (remember Walmart's much-maligned marketing maven, John Fleming? Now heading up Uniqlo's global e-comm).

Uniqlo's success rests on it rocking its still-limited, flagship-forward physical retail presence and driving scale through digital. It's not a bad strategy. Uniqlo drives awareness through its well-located stores which are brimming with well-priced, better basics and a smattering of exclusive technical togs. Once Uniqlo sets the hook, many shoppers will hit uniqlo.com for future orders once they get back home.

Will Uniqlo continue to eschew small formats and stick with its flagship scheme? If so, digital will have to pick up the slack and drive the scale. Look to Williams Sonoma to see how it's done.

Read the article and check out the rest of the discussion.