Aeon to build malls in major Asian countries

Bangkok Post

Aeon, the Japanese business group better known here as personal loan provider, unveiled a multi-billion-dollar investment plan to develop shopping centres in major Asian countries except Thailand.

Thailand is not on Aeon's radar screen as the country is crowded with local heavyweight players like Central Pattana Plc and The Mall Group.

Sharp to cut thousands of jobs

The Business Times

Sharp Corp may lay off several thousand workers and sell office buildings in Tokyo as losses at Japan's last major fabricator of liquid crystal displays for televisions expand, the Nikkei business daily said.

The maker of Aquos TVs will likely post a group net loss of about JPY100 billion (USD1.28b) for the April-June quarter after a USD198 million settlement in a US LCD cartel case added to its deficit during the three months, the paper said without citing anyone.

Asian cosmetics summit tackles major ethical & ecological issues

The second Asia-Pacific edition of the Sustainable Cosmetics Summit will take place on 12 November in Hong Kong. Organised by UK-based research company Organic Monitor, the summit comprises two workshops and a detailed seminar programme, aiming to tackle some of the major ethical & ecological issues facing the Asian cosmetics industry. Major topics on the two-day agenda include sustainable packaging, alternatives to animal testing methods, green formulations, environmental impacts, halal cosmetics, and ayurveda in cosmetics.

Sportswear, websites the top choices for Chinese shoppers


Major sportswear brands and online shopping platforms top the rankings in a new survey of consumers' favourite retailers in mainland China.

Nike, adidas and Li Ning received the top three rankings in this year's Retail Proposition Index study conducted by OC&C Strategy Consultants, an international management consulting company.

S Korea seniors' income among lowest


The income of elderly people compared to the average household's in South Korea ranked second lowest in major economies, a report showed on Tuesday, indicating that the country's public pension system remains relatively insufficient to support retirees.

India's gems, jewellery exports decline 12pc in May

Business Standard

Gems and jewellery exports declined by 12 percent year on year to USD3.2 billion in May on account of weak demand in major markets like Europe.

The exports stood at USD3.7b in the same period last fiscal, according to the data provided by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).

"The demand is sluggish in traditional markets like Europe," GJEPC Chairman Rajiv Jain said.

IKEA's India entry proposal sets policy conditions

Business Standard

The devil is always in the detail. Closer scrutiny of IKEA's India entry application makes it clear the celebrations may have been premature, as the EUR25-billion (USD31.27b) Scandinavian furniture major virtually wants an overhaul of the single-brand retail FDI policy.

IKEA has set rigid terms for the government. If approved, these would tantamount to a change in policy. The company had earlier refused to set up stores in India, despite the FDI (foreign direct investment) limit having been raised to 100 percent, over sourcing hurdles.

Sports boost tobacco, beer sales in Thailand

Bangkok Post

Sales of beer and cigarettes are set to rise in Thailand this year as distributors are starting to stock products ahead of two major upcoming sports events, according to the Office of Industrial Economics (OIE).

Anan Assawasoponkul, director of the Industrial Economics Information Centre, said this period is usually a low season for alcohol, as it coincides with the three-month Buddhist Lent period.

But the Euro 2012 football tournament next month and the Olympics in July and August are major factors that will push sales of beer throughout the year.

Burberry targets super rich with bigger stores

The Malaysian Insider

UK luxury brand Burberry hopes to insulate itself against global economic headwinds by investing in bigger stores in major cities such as London, Chicago and Hong Kong that are popular both with tourists and the super rich.

Reporting another jump in profit on Wednesday, Burberry said it would invest up to GBP200 million (USD313.7m) in the business over the coming year with about one third of it going towards larger format outlets including a relocated store on London's Regent Street and a rebuild in Chicago.

Retail rents in 16 Asia markets shows sluggish growth


Retail rents in 16 major cities in the Asia-Pacific region grew sluggishly in the first quarter as a weakening global economy dampened consumer confidence.

The Asia-Pacific Prime Rental Index compiled by property consultant CBRE, which monitors 16 major markets excluding Japan, showed these cities recorded 0.4 percent growth in the first quarter. But this was slightly better than the 0.1 percent growth in the fourth quarter of last year.

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