Taiwan bookstore-retailer Eslite opens first Japanese outlet

28, Sep. 2019

Eslite Spectrum Nihonbashi, a bookstore and retail space including cafes and shops, opens near Tokyo Station on Sept. 27, 2019.
Eslite Spectrum Nihonbashi, a bookstore and retail space including cafes and shops, opens near Tokyo Station on Sept. 27, 2019.

TAIPEI, NNA – Eslite Corp., Taiwan’s major bookstore chain operator, opened a store in central Tokyo Friday, marking its first overseas shop outside Chinese-speaking regions.

Eslite Spectrum Nihonbashi, a bookstore and retail space including cafes and shops, got its start in Japan as a core tenant of the Coredo Nihonbashi mall. Mall operator Mitsui Fudosan Co.aims to revitalize the area.

The 2,870-square-meter space on the mall’s second floor replicates Eslite’s features that are common in Taiwan. They include shops that sell stationery, accessories and handmade soaps as well as a cooking studio.

The Coredo Nihonbashi store houses tenants selling nearly 100 brands from both Japan and Taiwan, an Eslite spokeswoman in Taipei said. About half are newer Taiwanese retailers.

“We expect the store will serve as a medium between Taiwanese and Japanese cultures and become a platform for Asian cultural exchanges,” Eslite President Mercy Wu said in an interview with NNA on the sidelines of an opening event on Friday.

The eslite spectrum MF Co., a joint venture owned 61 percent by Eslite’s subsidiary Eslite Spectrum Co.based in Taipei, and 39 percent by Mitsui Fudosan Co. has contracted with Yokohama-based century-old bookstore operator Yurindo Co. to run the Tokyo retail outlet, the spokeswoman in Taipei said.

Eslite opened its first bookstore in Taiwan in 1989. Since then it has expanded into running cultural spaces, hotels and other retailers. Eslite runs 44 stores in Taiwan, three in Hong Kong and two in mainland China.

Corredo Muromachi Terrace opens near Tokyo Station on Sept. 27, 2019.
Corredo Muromachi Terrace opens near Tokyo Station on Sept. 27, 2019.