H&M plans China, Asia expansion

Hong Kong Fashion retailer H&M announced Thursday it would up its store count in China by almost 30% by the end of 2009. The increase comes as part of H&M’s expansion plans for Asia, Reuters reported.

H&M said opening stores in Hong Kong helped pave the way for the company's expansion into Asia.

"We are using it (Hong Kong) as a platform to operate in Asia, because after mainland China, we also opened in Japan. We will also open in Korea next year," Lex Keijser, H&M Greater China country manager, told Reuters.

"It (the Asia market) could be the newest and biggest market for H&M in future, because there is so much potential if you look at Asia. We've just started in Hong Kong, mainland China, Japan and Korea," Keijser said.

H&M currently has four stores in Japan and is opening its first unit in Korea in March. Present Greater China totals are 21 stores, slated to increase to 27 by the end of December.

H&M has over 1,800 shops in more than 30 countries, with its principal markets in Germany, the United Kingdom and Sweden.

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