Sat, Dec 30, 2006 - Page 12 News List

Pacific Sogo opens 11-story Fuxing outlet

By Jackie Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

Sogo Department Store's Fuxing Branch, located at the MRT Zhongxiao-Fuxing Station, holds a grand opening yesterday. The new outlet is the first large shopping mall co-constructed with an MRT station.

PHOTO: CNA

Pacific Sogo Department Store (太平洋崇光百貨) yesterday opened its seventh location across the street from its most profitable store on Zhongxiao East Road, hoping to further consolidate its customer base in the face of rising competition from Xinyi District stores.

The Fuxing store which is connected to the Zhongxiao-Fuxing MRT Station, will have three entrances, to be opened by early February, with the mass transportation system.

The retailer is confident that the huge passenger flow will bring in crowds and spur consumption.

But just as shoppers were swarming in to check out the latest display, the new location unexpectedly experienced a 15-minute blackout at 4:30pm yesterday.

No one was hurt or trapped in the elevators, which are supported by uninterruptible power systems, the firm said.

During the ribbon-cutting ceremony held earlier yesterday, chairwoman Chung Chin (鍾琴) assured shoppers that the new location is not a duplicate of its cash cow, the Zhongxiao branch, especially considering their proximity.

"The Fuxing branch has 342 brands and stores, and has an 81 percent difference compared with the product mix in the Zhongxiao outlet," she said.

The 11-story branch occupies 8,700m2, including parking lots on three basement levels. Its business space of 4,400m2 is more than 140 percent larger than the Zhongxiao outlet, spokesman James Wang Kuo (汪郭鼎松) said.

Aiming to create a high-end and fashion-oriented shopping environment, the retailer is including an array of prestigious boutiques at the new location, including Versace, Burberry, Hogan, Hermes, Dior and Chanel.

Singapore-based international bookstore Page One has also opened its second store here, in addition to its store in Taipei 101 Mall.

As part of the firm's plan to attract affluent customers, an exclusive VIP lounge has been set up on the 9th floor, only accessible to the company's 1,000 most loyal consumers.

The Fuxing branch is expected to bring in sales of NT$6 billion (US$184 million) per annum.

This would help Pacific Sogo's three locations in the Zhongxiao commercial area, including its super-premium Dunhua store, to achieve book sales of NT$22 billion next year.

That would mean outpacing the Xinyi District's retail total of around NT$20 billion, Wang Kuo said.

The bustling Xinyi District has a high concentration of department stores and shopping malls, including four Shin Kong Mitsukoshi Department Store (新光三越) outlets, the Taipei 101 Mall, the New York New York shopping mall and Eslite Corp's (誠品) flagship store.

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