By Aimee Chanthadavong
Japanese retailer Daiso has opened the doors to its fourth subsidiary-owned store in Sydney's Westfield Parramatta.
But unlike its already existing franchise-based stores, the Parramatta store is the company’s largest rebranded store.
Heading this expansion is Daiso Australia CEO Kit Cheong who told RetailBiz the company has worked closely with its Japanese counterpart to create this store.
“The products are still the same but the first thing you’ll notice about the rebrand is the brightness of the store. It’s cheerful and lets the products speak for themselves. In terms of ambience, it is so conducive it encourages consumers to shop. It’s such a fun store to be in and that’s what we’re trying to create here,” she said.
The store will carry 13,000 product lines including Daiso’s popular ranges of homewares, kitchenware, cosmetics and personal care. But its gardening and fishing gear categories will also be expanded as part of the new look.
“I think customers get bored. And it’s the same old, same old. What we are trying to bring here is really innovative products and a new look,” Cheong said, noting the stores are not just about carrying “quirky Japanese” products but also everyday items.
“We’re probably going to expand categories that are not really well represented. We’re trying to bring as many things as possible that will work really well. The products definitely speak for itself but we have delivered it in a shopping environment that I think customers will love.”
The products will continue to be sold at Daiso’s unique selling price point of $2.80.
“All the reactions I have ever received about our price is ‘you have made a mistake’. There are some products, such as screws that are selling for $2.80 and it may be cheaper elsewhere, but I’m not saying we’re the cheapest in every category. But f you look at buying pottery pots for $2.80 it is outstanding value,” Cheong said.
“The great thing about Daiso is you’re part of a company purchasing for 3,400 stores. So we don’t really need to innovate products here as that’s done in Japan who work along with our manufacturers. It’s a very close relationship so there’s no middle man but that gives us the opportunity to be able to give this experience, have this price and make money.”
Cheong said the store opening is just another step of Daiso’s aggressive expansion path.
“There are altogether 13 stores planned for this year. This is our fourth so it means nine more to go before November. We have opened in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. We’ll be concentrating on the eastern seaboard until we get them all right.”