Charlie Lehmann's blog

Quick thoughts on Japanese retail trends

My reading on the current picture of Japanese consumer and retail trends shows that a stagnated economy, ageing population and closed borders to migrants has meant that growth across the general retail landscape has slumped over the past two decades. Though the state of Japanese retail may not look too dynamic on the surface, underneath is a consumer culture that appears to be moving away from large department store retails toward specialty stores, crowded outlet malls and e-retailing.

Large retail stores going under and leaving empty spaces

More than 300 former Woolworths stores lie vacant a year-and-a-half after the 807-branch retailer went under in the UK according to a recent report produced in the UK by Local Data Company (LDC). For a century, 'Woolies' was one of the most famous brands in the high street, but now it exists only in cyberspace as part of the online empire of Shop Direct, which paid an estimated £10m for the name in February last year.

Retail Gurus

Some of the retail gurus to look out for and some I'll be writing about in my project:

Mr. J J. Strub, A retail guru & author from USA, a specialist in manufacturing and enterprise-wide software;

Mr. Johan Pellicaan, Managing Director, ProClarity International, Netherlands, a specialist on retail intelligence;

Prof. T A S Vijayaraghavan - XLRI, Jamshedpur, India, a doctorate in Supply Chain management.

Poject Proposal and research in progress

While researching the emerging trends in retail internationally I have also begun to work out my project proposal which will eventually detail all the things necessary to complete the project at hand. The project title will be: 

The Empty Spaces Project: A literature review and analysis on the key National and International authorities on retail and its related trends that are defining the future of retail and how the Empty Spaces Initiative will be able to fit into the future of retail.

Research into the future of retail and how empty spaces fit into the picture

My name is Charlie and I'm a social research student at UTS. I'm working on the Empty Spaces project with the Shopfront team. Specifically I'll be researching international retail trends in America and Japan, national trends in Australia, the future of retail trade and how empty spaces will be able to fit in to the evolving structure of retail and its trends.

I'll be blogging regularly about my progress - and if anyone has any leads or ideas of who I should talk to, I'd be very pleased to hear from you.

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