UNIQLO to Open New Prototype Store at Maebashi, Gunma

TOKYO, Apr 19, 2023 – (JCN Newswire via SEAPRWire.com) – Global apparel retailer UNIQLO will open the UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store on Friday, April 21st, at Maebashi (Gunma Prefecture, Japan). This new store represents a prototype for global roadside UNIQLO stores going forward, and features innovative design elements that are a first-of-their-kind for the company.

For the new Maebashi store, Kashiwa Sato, Creative Director and CEO, SAMURAI Inc. and Chief Creative Director for the project, developed a new roadside store concept that both appeals to customers and embodies the UNIQLO philosophy of contributing to the development of a prosperous society and realization of a better world. To achieve these aims, the store has been designed with range of energy-saving features, as well as an expanded suite of lifestyle services. Going forward, the company intends for the store to serve as a prototype for new roadside stores globally.

Group Executive Officer Masahiro Endo said: “With the new Maebashi Minami IC Store, we have created a new type of UNIQLO, where customers can both shop for our clothing, as well as gather and connect with each other. Reducing our energy consumption was also at the front of mind when developing the store, and the various technical and design features utilized represent meaningful steps towards meeting our 2030 greenhouse gas reduction targets. Going forward, we look forward to using this store as a prototype for our new roadside stores globally.”

Energy-saving features and new lifestyle experiences for customers

In line with the company’s target to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in its own store and office operations by 90% by 2030 (compared to 2019 levels), the new Maebashi store incorporates a number of features designed to help minimize energy usage. In addition, the store also brings together a range of the newest UNIQLO lifestyle services, including the UNIQLO FLOWER florist shop, UNIQLO COFFEE cafe, and Japan’s first permanent RE.UNIQLO STUDIO – the company’s repair, reuse, recycle and remake service.

A video showcasing the unique features of the UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store is available here.

More information

Nine energy-saving features

Reflecting the company’s commitment to reducing its energy footprint, UNIQLO worked with Takenaka Corporation (General Contractor, Japan) to incorporate a variety of features into the new store. Most of the electricity used in conventional UNIQLO stores is for lighting and air conditioning. Through the integration of various types of energy-saving lighting fixtures and other technologies, the UNIQLO Maebashi store is expected to use around 40% less electricity compared to conventional UNIQLO roadside stores.1 Energy generated from solar panels is also estimated to offset around 15% of the total power consumption (based on a calculation by UNIQLO). Together, these elements have earned the building accreditation including:

a) BELS2 top five-star rating.3
b) Building Energy Index (BEI) value3 of 0.33. (As a BELS evaluation index, store design with potential for a 67% reduction in primary energy consumption)
c) ZEB Ready4 certification (Building conforming to primary energy consumption reduction of 50% or higher from standard primary energy consumption, excluding renewable energy)

1. Comparison assuming the same area for the UNIQLO Tomioka Store (opened in October 2018) in the same prefecture.
2. The Building-Housing Energy-efficiency Labeling System (BELS) is a third-party certification based on guidelines from Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT).
3. The BEI value (primary energy consumption standard) is calculated from primary energy consumption based on building energy consumption performance standards prescribed by the Japanese government. The BELS evaluation is the basis for ZEB (Net Zero Energy Building), and determines the ZEB certification level.
4. ZEB Ready certification was received on March 17, 2023, based on guidelines from Japan’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy in the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), as a “Building that aims to achieve net zero primary energy consumption throughout the year by limiting the energy load through advanced architectural design, proactive utilization of natural energy through the adoption of passive technologies (construction techniques that use natural energy to the greatest extent possible), and the introduction of high-efficiency equipment systems, to achieve significant energy savings while maintaining the quality of the indoor environment, while also enhancing energy independence as much as possible through the use of renewable energy.”

Numerous technologies have been utilized to help reduce energy consumption in the store. The UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store incorporates the following nine features:

1) Skylights
Skylights have been installed in the ceiling at the center of the store. Along with illuminating the interior, the use of natural lighting in combination with artificial lighting that is controlled automatically with brightness sensors reduces a portion of the energy used for lighting.

2) Glass Façade
As with the building’s skylights, the large glass façade provides natural lighting, additionally reducing a portion of the energy used for lighting.

3) Eaves
Considering the angle of the sun during sunset in summer and winter, the building’s eaves reduce the amount of energy used for interior lighting and air conditioning.

4) Air Curtain
An air curtain installed near the building’s automatic door helps to control the balance between indoor air pressure and the air outside by effectively curbing the inflow of outside air and the outflow of indoor air when the door is open.

5) Brightness Sensors
Brightness sensors installed on the ceiling measure the indoor brightness level to control in-store lighting.

6) Motion Sensors
Lights are automatically turned on and off in areas such as the stockroom and back rooms, with the lights switched off when these areas are vacant.

7) CO2/Temperature Sensors and Total Heat Exchanger
Sensors measure the CO2 density (number of people) and in-store temperature, turning fans on as necessary. Additionally, the total heat exchanger removes thermal energy (temperature and humidity) from the exhaust air, and transfers fresh air from outside into the store. This allows for optimization of ventilation volume.

8) Insulation Made from Recycled Clothing
The building’s exterior walls are insulated with recycled materials, including 30% shredded UNIQLO clothing donated by customers. This insulation reduces energy consumption that would otherwise be used for air conditioning.

9) Solar Panels
Solar panels installed on the roof of the building are expected to provide approximately one-third of the annual energy consumption of the store.

Expanded customer lifestyle services

In addition to these technological and design innovations, the store also brings together five elements to offer a true lifestyle destination for customers, including:

1) Japan’s first permanent RE.UNIQLO STUDIO
The RE.UNIQLO STUDIO clothing reuse, recycle, repair, and remake service was first opened in Japan on a trial basis in October 2022, and is now being expanded for the first time into a permanent service at the Maebashi store. Alongside repairing clothes, customers can also request remodeling to give new life to their favorite jeans, denim jackets, or shirts, as well as sashiko embroidery or prints. An overview of the service is available here.

2) Seasonal flowers from UNIQLO FLOWER
UNIQLO FLOWER first started in April 2020 at UNIQLO PARK Yokohama Bayside, and now operates in 15 locations in Japan, mainly in the central Tokyo area, and through the UNIQLO online store. The UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store will have an area called “FLOWER BOX” inside the UNIQLO logo on the right-hand side of the front entrance, offering around 30 varieties of fresh flowers to add color to the everyday lives of customers.

Customers can enjoy select, specialty coffee at the “UNIQLO COFFEE BOX” area at the right-hand side inside of the front entrance. The first UNIQLO COFFEE was opened in the UNIQLO Ginza Global Flagship Store in 2021, and together with UNIQLO Tokyo Global Flagship Store, this will be the third location. The UNIQLO COFFEE at the UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store will be the largest so far, where customers can spend a relaxed moment enjoying a drink, listening to music, and sampling local delicacies such as Anpotan Cookies and Maebashi Dorayaki.

4) Fun for kids at UNIQLO KIDS BOX
The “KIDS BOX” area inside the UNIQLO logo on the left-hand side of the front entrance has a slide and kid-sized bench cushions where children can play in between shopping. The playfully-designed cushions are shaped like letters that spell out “UNIQLO.” This area also features displays that present UNIQLO’s environmental conservation activities in a kid-friendly way.

5) After shopping, enjoy a coffee and chat in UNIQLO GARDEN
UNIQLO GARDEN is a green space surrounding the approximately 2,500m2 UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store, with uniquely-designed benches, desks, and parasols. The free and open space can be used to take a break from shopping, or have a family picnic. (The color of the grass will vary by season and growing conditions.)

Overview of UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store

Name: UNIQLO Maebashi Minami IC Store
Location: 2008 Kamesato-machi, Maebashi-shi, Gunma Prefecture
Access: Approx. five minutes by car from Maebashi Minami IC on the Kita-Kanto Expressway
Sales Floor Area: Approx. 2,500m2
Opening Date: Friday, April 21, 2023


This new type of store is designed to allow customers to enjoy spending the day with UNIQLO. The exterior features giant logos like modern art objects at either end of the building that clearly identify the store as UNIQLO, even at a distance. The comfortable and enjoyable space and services encourage customers to stay longer and return again and again.

About UNIQLO LifeWear

Apparel that comes from the Japanese values of simplicity, quality and longevity. Designed to be of the time and for the time, LifeWear is made with such modern elegance that it becomes the building blocks of each individual’s style. A perfect shirt that is always being made more perfect. The simplest design hiding the most thoughtful and modern details. The best in fit and fabric made to be affordable and accessible to all. LifeWear is clothing that is constantly being innovated, bringing more warmth, more lightness, better design, and better comfort to people’s lives.

About UNIQLO and Fast Retailing

UNIQLO is a brand of Fast Retailing Co., Ltd., a leading Japanese retail holding company with global headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. UNIQLO is the largest of eight brands in the Fast Retailing Group, the others being GU, Theory, PLST (Plus T), Comptoir des Cotonniers, Princesse tam.tam, J Brand and Helmut Lang. With global sales of approximately 2.3 trillion yen for the 2022 fiscal year ending August 31, 2022 (US $16.6 billion, calculated in yen using the end of August 2022 rate of $1 = 138.7 yen), Fast Retailing is one of the world’s largest apparel retail companies, and UNIQLO is Japan’s leading specialty retailer.

UNIQLO continues to open large-scale stores in some of the world’s most important cities and locations, as part of its ongoing efforts to solidify its status as a global brand. Today the company has a total of more than 2,400 stores across the world, including Japan, Asia, Europe and North America. In 2010 UNIQLO established a social business in Bangladesh together with the Grameen Bank and currently there are around 20 Grameen-UNIQLO stores, mostly located in Dhaka.

With a corporate statement committed to changing clothes, changing conventional wisdom and change the world, Fast Retailing is dedicated to creating great clothing with new and unique value to enrich the lives of people everywhere. For more information about UNIQLO and Fast Retailing, please visit www.uniqlo.com and www.fastretailing.com.

For media queries, please contact:
Fast Retailing Global Corporate PR at fr_corporate_pr@fastretailing.com

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