The affordable brand upped its fashion cred by luring famed designer Jil Sander to be its creative director. Uniqlo also sits at the vanguard of retail Web sites, with a stunning online home designed by the pioneering Yugo Nakamura.
2) GOV Retailing
The product of a merger of three Fast Retailing units, GOV now includes shoe brand Foot Park and clothier G.u. (the name sounds like the Japanese word for freedom). G.u.’s motto: “Buy with ease, wear with ease.” It keeps the first part of that bargain with $10 jeans.
3) Cabin Co.
The women’s fashion company, including Japanese brands Zazie, Real Riche, EnracinÌÎÌ_Ì´å©, We-nge, and E.A.P., became a wholly owned Fast Retailing subsidiary in 2008. Uniqlo’s retail experts have been called in to revamp marketing and store operations.
4) Comptoir des Cotonniers
Fast Retailing acquired this French-born retailer, which targets mothers and daughters, five years ago. Under its new corporate umbrella, the brand has expanded across Asia and Europe, adding children’s, lingerie, and accessories lines.
5) Princesse Tam.Tam
The French lingerie and swimwear brand, acquired in 2005, now has a presence in 45 countries and is available in high-end department stores, including Harrods and Neiman Marcus.
6) Link Theory Holdings
The top brands at this company–part of the Fast Retailing family since 2003–are New York-based Theory and the minimalist, upscale Helmut Lang.