June 7, 2017 9:45 am JST

Shiseido has something for Asia's sweet tooth

Pricey cosmetics brand seeks sugary synergies

MOTOKAZU MATSUI, Nikkei staff writer

© Reuters

TOKYO -- Since it opened 115 years ago, Shiseido Parlour has been something of a landmark in the Japanese capital's prestigious Ginza district. Now, the restaurants and sweets side business of cosmetics maker Shiseido is looking to expand its presence in other parts of Asia.  

The company -- which runs 15 restaurants and cafes and sells original sweets at 60 locations in Japan -- is now selecting a location in Bangkok for a new confectionery shop, which is expected to open sometime next year. It will be second Shiseido Parlour abroad.

The new shop will likely carry the brand's popular cheesecakes and signature biscuits, stamped with the hana tsubaki, or camellia flower, logo.

Shiseido began selling cosmetics in Thailand in the 1960s, initially through Thai agencies. The brand's established status "will help the sweets shop lure middle-class earners and travelers in Thailand who are familiar with our cosmetics," said Naoki Hashimoto, a Shiseido Parlour executive.

It is also expected to draw Japanese expats.

Shiseido Parlour opened its first overseas location last August, in the Singapore Takashimaya department store. The shop targets wealthy Singaporeans. Products range in price from 8 Singapore dollars to S$60 ($5.77-$43.44). They are almost two times more expensive than in Japan. Japanese customers account for only 20% or so of the shop's sales.

In the fall, Shiseido Parlour also began selling sweets in Malaysia, through the Kuala Lumpur Isetan department store.

Shiseido is pushing to globalize the entire group under CEO Masahiko Uotani's Vision 2020 midterm business plan.

Shiseido Parlour began in a corner of a drugstore operated by the cosmetics maker. It was the first place in Japan to sell sodas. It also introduced ice cream and Western-style meals to Japanese people. More recently, it has tried to convey a luxurious, sophisticated lifestyle.

The group is counting on Shiseido Parlour to make it a comprehensive beauty business from the perspective of foods.

The unit itself expects to expand its overseas sales to 300 million yen ($2.68 million) by 2020.

To get there, it is also selling its sweets online. Last year, it began selling its confectioneries in Hong Kong and Singapore through the Rakuten shopping portal.

In December, Shiseido partnered with Tokyo-based Inagora, the operator of Wando, a Chinese e-commerce platform. 

Shiseido Co., Ltd.

Japan

Market(Ticker): TKS(4911)
Sector:
Industry:
Consumer Non-Durables
Household/Personal Care
Market cap(USD): 14,535.33M
Shares: 400M

Takashimaya Co., Ltd.

Japan

Market(Ticker): TKS(8233)
Sector:
Industry:
Retail Trade
Department Stores
Market cap(USD): 3,461.86M
Shares: 355.51M

Rakuten, Inc.

Japan

Market(Ticker): TKS(4755)
Sector:
Industry:
Consumer Services
Other Consumer Services
Market cap(USD): 17,392.91M
Shares: 1,433.43M

Get Insights on Asia In Your Inbox

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

Get your first month for $0.99

Redeemable only through the Subscribe button below

Once subscribed, you can…

  • Read all stories with unlimited access (5 articles per month without subscription)
  • Use our smartphone and tablet apps

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

3 months for $9
SUBSCRIBE TODAY

Take advantage of this limited offer.
Subscribe now to get unlimited access to all articles.

To read the full story, Update your account

We could not renew your subscription.
You need to update your payment information.

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

Once subscribed, you can…

  • Read all stories with unlimited access (5 articles per month without subscription)
  • Use our smartphone and tablet apps

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

3 months for $9
SUBSCRIBE TODAY

Take advantage of this limited offer.
Subscribe now to get unlimited access to all articles.

To read the full story, Update your account

We could not renew your subscription.
You need to update your payment information.