Emart’s No Brand heads overseas for first time

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Emart’s No Brand heads overseas for first time

Emart is taking its No Brand line to the Philippines, the first overseas expansion for the label.

The chain announced Monday that it signed a franchise agreement with Robinsons Retail, the No. 2 retail company in the Philippines, to roll out No Brand and Scentence in the country. Both are Emart in-house lines.

“Under the deal, 50 No Brand and 50 Scentence stores will be established in main shopping malls and department stores at the Philippines by 2020,” Emart said in a statement.

Robinsons will be in charge of store operations, while Emart will be paid a licensing fee and profit from the export of products to the stores.

No Brand is an Emart label that sells daily necessities and some food items. Around 70 percent of No Brand goods are manufactured by local small enterprises. Although it was started as an in-house line, No Brand has been so successful that stand-alone stores have been opened.

Emart has established stores overseas, but this is the first time No Brand has been taken abroad. With partner Robinsons, the local retailer plans to co-develop No Brand products for the Philippine market and possibly export them for sale at Emart stores in Vietnam and Mongolia.

For Scentence, Emart’s in-house beauty brand, the Philippine project is the brand’s second overseas move. It opened in Saudi Arabia in July. Emart says it plans to develop Scentence beauty products that fit well with the climate of the Philippines.

No Brand and Scentence are both part of Shinsegae Vice President Chung Yong-jin’s strategy to develop “specialized stores” that focus on a particular product category instead of selling a little of everything as is done in discount chains.

The discount chain market is saturated in Korea and is facing mounting regulations.

“The deal to launch No Brand and Scentence in the Philippines is meaningful to us in that it diversifies our global portfolio for specialized stores,” said Lee Joo-ho, who heads Emart’s global business.

BY SONG KYOUNG-SON [song.kyoungson@joongang.co.kr]
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