VF Corporation announced that one of its subsidiaries has established a majority-owned joint venture with Mitsui & Co. for marketing and distribution of Napapijri(R) brand products in Japan. Acquired by VF in 2004, Napapijri(R) is a premium, outdoor-inspired sportswear brand sold primarily in Europe. Prior to the establishment of the joint venture, the brand was sold in Japan through a distributor.
“Building a stronger presence in such important markets as Japan is a key part of continuing the Napapijri(R) brand’s strong momentum,” said Aidan O’Meara, president of VF Asia-Pacific, in a statement.
“We are fortunate to have Mitsui as our partner, given their extensive reach and well-established capabilities. At the same time, VF’s excellence in brand building and marketing will enable the brand to reach its full potential in Japan,” O’Meara added.
He noted that growth will come from the opening of additional freestanding retail stores as well as through expanded distribution in speciality and department stores. Masato Fujino has been named as president of the joint venture, Napapijri Japan Co. Ltd, which is based in Tokyo.