Savvy marketing skills are highly sought after in the business and retail world especially with those unstoppable entrepreneur’s. Merchandise corporations offer big money to advertising firms to promote their products. Unfortunately, small business owners and sales representatives do not often have the luxury of having such a large advertising budget. Successfully marketing a product, service, or talent can be an intimidating process and one that is full of frustrations and trial and error procedures. Jonathan Budd’s Unstoppable Entrepreneur offers an exciting and well-developed business plan in the marketing area which utilizes important online aspects to allow a business to take flight.
With the technological development of the Internet, social media, and new methods of marketing to reach global customers, Unstoppable Entrepreneur has developed a sure-fire method to assist business owners in gaining momentum in recognition and company-awareness. Utilizing all of the effective tools of online marketing will allow new business people to venture with confidence in to the world of online marketing and product sales. There lies a demand for nearly any service, talent, and product. Reaching consumers and customers and informing them of your product and service is the key between your businesses becoming a success or a failure.
Unstoppable Entrepreneur Review raves about the proven works of the unique and dominating marketing techniques which allow smaller companies and independent sales representatives to reach out to a broader base of clientele and in maintaining customer loyalty. Maintaining consumer loyalty is the key to a business growing on solid ground and having a stable and successful career, even in economic downtimes. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter have provided the world with global communication and marketing tools which allow businesses to reach out to people on the other side of the planet. Without the use of the Internet, this world-wide marketing would never have been possible.
The program called Unstoppable Entrepreneur Bonus gives significant education and skills which will allow people to hone and enhance the marketing for their businesses. Nearly every business owner in today’s society has a website and more and more are acquiring social media sites. Though this is the first step in global marketing, the correct use of these tools is imperative to effectively reach customers who are in the targeted market for the specific talent, service, or product. Jonathan Budd’s unique marketing program is uniquely designed to provide assistance and education, as well as effective media and marketing tools to budding new business owners.
Fully utilizing every aspect of the Internet available, as well as local marketing tips, business networking, and customer follow-up is vital for business owners to develop consumer interest and maintain consumer loyalty. The Unstoppable Entrepreneur will inform and educate people in the sales world on how to fully realize their business and financial dreams and how to expand their small businesses in a manageable way which will ensure current and future success.
Just a click away and with a minimal investment, this program can be the answer to your business concerns and challenges. http://unstoppableentrepreneurbonus.com/bonus
Private Trading of Medium Term Notes, also known as Mid-Term Notes and MTNs, is essentially capital raised for the purposes of the development of working capital and the upward trend towards strengthening a company’s balance sheet. More times than naught, private trade programs encompass the development of new products, technologies and overall expansion. Whereas in this article, In the broad sense and in the most known categorization, we will be discussing Medium Term Note Private Trading which is a completely different investment channel generating tremendous returns for small and large, individual and corporate investors alike.
Investors have limited access when it comes to educating themselves and investing in the high-yield arena of MTN Trading. Unless they have liquidity in the hundreds of millions, most others who have less liquidity for investment find themselves on the outside trying to get a peek in. In this article, the general development of knowledge with regard to private trading, MTNs, BGs and other instrument facets, will explain why and where individuals willing to invest from M on up can participate in the world of Medium Term Note Trading.
Why is there such a demand for investing in Private Programs that utilize MTNs and on occasion Treasury Bills?
Since the mid-1990’s to the present day, Medium term Note originations total investment dollars have escalated from a estimated, yet traceable, phase of just over billion dollars in mid-1990s to a current level of well over billion dollars through the third quarter of 2008. There have been roughly 6,500 private trade programs done through the third quarter of 2008. Companies in the likes of Sony Capital, Harley Davidson, LG and other well recognized entities have all offered Mid-Term Notes collateralized by their assets for expansion and development. From a low of fewer than 2,500 in all of 1996, you can see that the interest towards Private Trading gains when markets and the economy as a whole degrades catapulting the need for short term, well secured notes backed by established corporations, banks, asset holders and countries.
Hedge Funds, Portfolio Managers and Private Investors are often attracted to these Private Programs and understand the rules and guidelines that follow. Less experienced, smaller investors tend to be dismissed due to the anxiety levels and continuous pestering of updates. High-net worth, seasoned investors have their blocked funds almost always are combined with other clients to build a larger trade bases, if individually large enough, say one billion and up, enter into a Private Trade Program by themselves; however they too may very well be bundled with other client assets to reduce the number of trades being managed. Their blocked funds represent these MTN Trade Programs and are a tremendous economic incentive in their own right by the generation of liquidity by the function of process.
The derived profits most often than not, as well as the leveraged amount of the blocked funds, will go into further capitalization of new companies believed to have significant growth possibilities in industries such as: healthcare, bio-technologies, software/hardware and telecommunications. These Private Trade Programs add value to these companies and further compel advancements in those particular sectors.
Without Medium Term Notes, the potential of utilizing them in Private Trading and the profits derived from such, many of the participants of these programs would never launch over the first tier with regards to the programs they are included in.
Typical Minimum Investment Requirement: Mid-Term Note Trading and investing is not easily accessible to the typical high-net worth investor or well capitalized corporation unless they first know these types of programs exist and then are either introduced to the trading platform from a referring client or through a series of referral educational sites where the client can thereafter request admission. Most Trade Programs typically will accept investors who are willing to commit as little as million to have blocked for the purposes of leverage. Although some Trade Managers have dropped their minimums to only 0K with coupled by a series of A,B,C programs to ramp up the clients capital to higher level trades.
Fund of Funds: A fund of funds holds the leveraged funds of many private partnerships that invest in private trades. It provides a way for firms and individual participants to increase cost effectiveness and thereby reduce their minimum investment requirement. Since a fund of funds is leveraging against those original funds, sometimes up to 20 to 50 times, the accumulated return for that specific funds of funds becomes much more lucrative.
In addition, because of its size and diversification, a fund of funds has the potential to offer greater returns than you might experience with an individual MTN Trade Program. This only holds true to those Programs that are under the 0 million dollar level though since most times the lesser amounts are leveraged through funds of funds or equivalent means.
The main disadvantage, if it could be considered such, is that there is an additional layer of fees paid to the fund of funds manager. Though typically 0 million and up will roll out the welcome mat, investors can on occasion, participate with 0,000 – million to the respective fund of funds manager. For those smaller amounts under million, the platform manager may not let you participate unless you are an accredited investor with a net worth between .5 million to million.
Is it worth the time and consideration? There are several key risks in any type of investing since you essentially, with any investment, can guarantee a return (except for low yielding T-Bills, etc.) Private Trading is no exception. As mentioned earlier, the fees of Private Trade Programs that cater to smaller investors can be higher than you would normally expect with conventional investments, such as mutual funds. With a pre-established historical return rate on these smaller (less than 0M) funds may be in the double to triple digits as reflected in previous scenarios. The promulgation of these fees are irrespective and of little consequence to the investor although many investors feel that they deserve more, do essentially doing very little.
In a market as volatile as the one we currently face, it is much harder to find streamlined programs that offer little risk. Transferring of investors’ funds is not evidenced in these Private Trade Programs that are at or above million dollars. A block is placed on the client’s funds within their account for the duration of the trading period. Hence, the safety the client experiences remains secure with the leveraged program they enter into.
InvestorEarth.com is an educational site dedicated to providing investors proven, high yield investments in a global recession market. Please visit http://www.investorearth.com.
The panel explores those improbable events that the marketplace under-assesses but which end having a powerful and unanticipated influence for investors. Fireside chat: Moderated by Chystia Freeland – US Managing Editor, Financial Times Nassim Taleb – Author, ‘The Black Swan’ Ian Bremmer – Founder, Eurasia Group Video Rating: 3 / 5
Eric Schmidt speaks at a Natural Resources Defense Council event held at Google NYC. The topic for the evening was “Partnership for the Earth: Strategies and Solutions for Energy Security. The speech was followed by a panel discussion featuring; Frances Beinecke, President of the Natural Resources Defense Council, Ralph Cavanaugh, co-director of NRDC’s energy program and Dan Reicher, Director, Climate Change and Energy Initiatives at Google.org. This event took place on November 20, 2008. Video Rating: 4 / 5
Recorded Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2011, at the Hoover Building in Washington, DC The US Department of Commerce and NIST hosted a moderated panel discussion about what role the government should play in standards development and use and how existing public-private initiatives in standard development and use and how existing public-private initiatives in standardization are working with thought leaders from industry and academia. More info at www.nist.gov
www.weforum.org 29.01.2010 The combination of food and financial crises trapped an estimated 50 to 90 million people in extreme poverty in 2009. How can the Millennium Development Goals for 2015 be met in the wake of the economic crisis? Vikram K. Akula, Founder and Chairperson, SKS Microfinance, India; Young Global Leader; Global Agenda Council on Poverty & Development Finance Helen E. Clark, Administrator, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), New York William H. Gates III, Co-Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, USA Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director, Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM), Geneva; Global Agenda Council on a Healthy Next Generation Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director, The Earth Institute, Columbia University and Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on the Millennium Development Goals, USA Morgan Tsvangirai, Prime Minister of Zimbabwe Moderated by Lord Malloch-Brown, Senior Adviser, Global Redesign Initiative, World Economic Forum Video Rating: 0 / 5
For years, hosting providers have been successfully delivering a wide array of software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions, including email, website hosting, customer relationship management (CRM), and more. These providers have played an important role in the SaaS revolution, helping to fuel rapid market growth by making the many benefits of service-based software delivery accessible to companies of all types and sizes.
Now, hosting companies can easily extend their suite of offerings to include IT Asset Management applications. By making SaaS-based IT Asset Management available, these firms can provide subscribers with a more convenient and affordable way to:
Enhance visibility into all components within their technology environment Track assets and related activities from the time they are purchased, until they are replaced Reduce IT acquisition and administration costs Eliminate infrastructure risks, such as viruses and security breaches Ensure compliance with software licensing contracts Increase the productivity of both IT staff and end users
The SaaS approach to IT asset management provides significant benefits to companies, allowing them to leverage existing relationships with hosted service providers, while utilizing the latest and greatest technologies. At the same time, they can acquire software in a more economical manner, and avoid the hassles of solution deployment and maintenance typically associated with on-site systems.
Any hosting company that serves IT departments and their staff, and is looking to expand their presence in the SaaS market – or gain entry into it for the first time – can derive significant advantages by offering IT Asset Management solutions:
Extend portfolios with new, innovative applications that deliver tangible, measurable value to subscribers Differentiate themselves in a highly competitive industry – and boost market share and revenues Offer comprehensive IT Asset Management as a stand-alone application, or incorporate powerful IT Asset Management capabilities into other services
SAManage is a leading global provider of on-demand IT management solutions which empower organizations to simplify the management of IT assets, gain better control, reduce IT costs, eliminate risks, and improve service levels.
Very affordable car insurance cover is one of the major factors in which one must look at when it comes to the selection of choosing your insurance policy. Today, with the internet, everyone can comfortably locate cheap car insurance quotes online with a mouse click and it is possible to get automobile insurance coverage quotes right away within a few seconds.
As suggested by its name, something that may be affordable to you is actually something that may be within your budget and that you will never be necessary or forced to go out of your ways for you in order to service or support it.
You’ll also come across there are sites which offer information and facts with regards to motor vehicle insurance.
One of the leading vehicle insurance internet site is carinsurance.com which has a superb source of important info for anyone who wants to find an Affordable automobile insurance policy cover for his or her motor vehicle.
On this web page, you’ll be able to pick economical car insurance coverage easily as well as quickly because of modern technology. Most instances, you get vehicle insurance plan rates immediately and don’t have to wait days for this data to arrive. In comparison to going to each vehicle insurance firm and asking for their charges, online car insurance websites will be able to do that for you and quicker.
In many circumstances, Inexpensive car insurance policy may be affordable to you but not to another party and you understand as this issue go one man’s meat may be another man’s poison.
Whenever we mention concerning this, you should really get to understand that each and every jurisdiction are subjected to their very own prices and also regarding that matter the different insurance plan businesses also do have the specific charges that they provide to their clients.
For almost all car insurance online resources, they will certainly ask you which state you reside in considering that the motor vehicle fees may vary from state to state. A few could possibly actually show you the costs from all fifty states and also counties therefore visitors can understand there is in reality quite a significant variation depending on where you stay.
The type and also age of your automobile might also determine your car insurance policy fees. Based on information from the traffic police department, insurance companies find out which kind of vehicles tend to be far more accident prone and consequently may possibly possess a more costly insurance policy charge.
Your age and also how many years of driving experience is also a significant factor in processing your auto insurance plans fees. Generally speaking, new drivers have a greater insurance plan fees due to the fact that they are new on the road and also can be much more prone to car crashes.
Even so, internet automobile insurance sites enables any one to get economical vehicle insurance plan quickly and also speedily from the privacy of your residences without the hassle of visiting each and every insurance company and subsequently evaluating their vehicle insurance plans costs.
We have some good news and some better news for corporate risk managers. The good news is that risk—once a mere afterthought in the world of corporate management—is moving toward center stage. More and more business leaders are coming to understand the vital role that risk management plays in shaping the future of their companies . . . which means that the opportunities for risk managers to influence thinking at the C-suite and boardroom level are greater than ever before.
The better news? What board members, CEOs, CFOs, directors of operations, and other top-level executives mean by “risk” goes beyond the traditional definition. Today’s “risk” is a bigger topic than in the past, carrying with it bigger challenges, new sets of skills, and a new way of thinking that you can master to elevate and expand the conversation.
If you’re a traditional risk manager, you’re expert at coping with the three familiar categories of business risk: hazard risks (fire, flood, earthquake), financial risks (bad loans, currency and interest rate swings), and operating risks (the computer system goes down, the supply chain gets interrupted, an employee steals). You’ve probably been working with insurance companies, finance and security experts, and other specialists to reduce the levels of risk your business faces in each of these areas and to develop hedging strategies to minimize potential losses.
These traditional kinds of risks remain extremely important. But today, more and more company leaders are beginning to focus on a different set of risks that can be even more dangerous. These are the strategic risks your business faces.
Strategic risks target one or more of the crucial elements in the design of your company’s business model. In some cases, they shatter the bond between you and your customers. In other cases, they undermine the unique value proposition that is the basis of your revenue stream. In still other cases, they siphon away the profits you depend on. And sometimes, they destroy the strategic control that helps your company fend off competition. In the worst case, a major strategic risk can threaten all these pillars of your business.
Not all businesses face every form of strategic risk (technology risk, competitor risk, customer risk, brand erosion, industry risk, project failure, etc.). But every business faces some. In fact, strategic risk comprises most of the total risk most companies face.
Here are a few examples of the kinds of strategic risks that most companies today are grappling with:
Project risk. Think back to the last major project your company initiated (R&D project, new product launch, market expansion, acquisition, IT project). What were the odds of success at the outset? What is the true success rate of all your company’s projects in the past five to ten years?
If you assess them honestly, the true odds of success at the outset of most major projects are less than 20%–which means the risk of failure is greater than 80%. The new risk management asks: Can those odds be changed? How? What specific moves have other companies made to radically alter the odds in their favor? Which of these moves can you use to dramatically change the odds on your next project, or even on your entire portfolio of projects?
Customer risk. Has your business ever been surprised by its customers—by sudden, unforeseen shifts in their preferences, priorities, and tastes? When this happens, the revenue base on which your company is built can erode very quickly. But there are companies that have found specific ways to beat customer risk. How have they learned to get inside the minds of their customers, anticipating surprises before they happen? What growth breakthroughs did they create? Can you adopt their methods successfully? The new risk management is focusing on answering questions like these.
Transition risk. When technology or business design shifts transform an industry, as many as 80% of incumbent firms fail to survive the transition. But a handful of companies have not only beaten transition risk, but also turned it into an enormous growth opportunity—and a few have done it successfully more than once. What lessons do these survivors have to teach the rest of us? Here is another area where the new risk management is deeply involved.
These three examples just skim the surface of the kinds of challenges posed by strategic risk. (Our new book, The Upside, delves into the seven chief forms of strategic risk in significant detail.) But they’ll suffice to illustrate the range of new problems risk managers can learn to think about in order to help their companies better navigate the new age of volatility that all of us are living through.
Of course, strategic risk has always existed. But it has not always been high on the list of leadership challenges. In more stable periods, everyone knew there were dangers that could threaten the viability of their companies’ business model, somewhere out in the indefinite future. But they usually weren’t considered big enough or likely enough to worry much about.
Today risk has moved to the top of the agenda. As everyone intuitively senses, our world is becoming a riskier place, featuring greater risks, more frequent risks, and more kinds of risks.
The explosion of risk is particularly obvious in certain fields, such as geopolitics, weather systems, and financial markets (although shrewd analysts like mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot have argued that the risk in markets has always been greater than generally recognized). It is becoming especially obvious in business. Companies that once owned seemingly invulnerable strategic niches have been reeling under assaults from quarters no one predicted. As a result, one great name after another appears in scare heads on the business pages. General Motors and Ford are working hard to reestablish their market positions; once-powerful brands from Sony, Levi’s, and Reader’s Digest to Polaroid, are eroding or disappearing before the onslaught of new competitors; U.S. manufacturers are losing tens of thousands of jobs to overseas competitors; airlines are facing challenges in the wake of deregulation and geopolitical developments; and the PC, TV, and stereo businesses are becoming no-profit zones as once-exclusive technologies become commodities.
No wonder business leaders from the boardroom to the executive suite are becoming increasingly nervous about the risks their companies face. All they need to do is switch on the TV news or open their newspapers to get an inkling of the looming threats.
The evidence that risk is increasing isn’t just anecdotal. It’s quantitative as well.
As an example, let’s look at the stock performance of electrical utility companies. (Yes, we know you probably don’t work at or even invest in a utility, but bear with us—it’s an unusually clear example of a trend with broad implications.) The utility business was historically regarded as an industry with an extraordinarily low risk profile—the classic “widows and orphans” stock holding.
But in the 1990s, something happened. For a host of economic and political reasons, the electric energy industry was rapidly deregulated. As a result, the volatility of earnings (EBITDA) for the average electrical utility roughly doubled during the nineties. And volatility means large, unpredictable changes—in revenues, earnings growth, dividends, stock prices. In other words, risk. And stock market analysts have found that the same is true in other industries.
Why is risk so much more threatening in today’s business world than ever before? There are many reasons, but several stand out:
• In today’s wired world, customers have instant access to more information about products and services than ever before—and can switch brands at the click of a button.
• The multiplication of sales channels (from direct mail to QVC to big-box discounters to the Internet) is opening up more avenues for competition and transforming once-unique product offerings into commodities.
• Deregulation is forcing businesses that once enjoyed the security of near-monopoly markets and guaranteed profits to struggle for survival.
• Globalization has opened every market to competitors from around the world, exerting powerful downward pressures on prices and further damaging brand loyalty.
• Worldwide capital in search of investment opportunities is driving an ever-accelerating pace of technological change, creating upheavals in more and more industries, including ones not normally thought of as technology-driven.
Thanks to trends like these, business strategies that seemed to guarantee success just a decade ago are now being battered by unpredictable, often-destructive forces of change. No wonder, during the last twelve years, fully 170 of the Fortune 500 lost 50 percent or more of their value over a twelve-month period—the kind of precipitous collapse that was once rare but now is becoming commonplace.
The fact is that many of those 170 value collapses suffered by the Fortune 500—as well as similar calamities that have befallen small- and mid-sized companies in every industry—could have been foreseen, prevented, and transformed into opportunities for growth.
What’s required to make this happen? Two things:
(1) A large dose of new thinking, beginning with an expansion of the definition of “risk management” to include not just insurable risks, but “uninsurable risks” as well, including the increasingly dangerous strategic risks that can threaten a company’s success, or survival; and
(2) Adoption of an array of new tools for measuring, responding to, and transforming risk—tools that many of today’s smartest companies are already developing and deploying, and which other businesses in virtually every arena can learn from, imitate, and improve upon.
We wrote The Upside to serve as a resource in both of these areas.
Experts in the arena of traditional risk management can play a crucial role in expanding and elevating the conversation about risk in their organization they can bring to bear both the new thinking and the new tools that can help their companies reduce controllable volatility (there will always be plenty of the other kind). And the sooner they begin the process, the sooner they can mitigate those risks, and in most cases transform those risks into upside opportunities, and sources of significant competitive advantage.
ADRIAN J. SLYWOTZKY — cited by Industry Week as promising “to be what Peter Drucker was to much of the 20th century, the management guru against whom all others are measured”—is a director of Oliver Wyman. He is the author of the bestselling The Profit Zone (selected by BusinessWeek as one of the ten best books of 1998), Value Migration, and How to Grow When Markets Don’t. He has also been published in the Harvard Business Review and the Wall Street Journal and has been a featured speaker at the Davos World Economic Forum, the Microsoft CEO Summit, the Forbes CEO Forum, and the Fortune CEO Conference.
Karl Weber is a freelance writer and editor who has collaborated with Adrian Slywotzky on several books and worked with such authors as former president Jimmy Carter, Loews Hotels CEO Jonathan Tisch, UN ambassador Richard Butler, and representative Richard Gephardt.
See www.crownbusiness.com or www.mercermc.com for more info.
Vice President Joe Biden talks about the steps the Administration has taken to strengthen the American auto industry as he visits the Chrysler Toledo Assembly Complex in Toledo, OH. August 23, 2010. Video Rating: 0 / 5
As Japan’s economy heads toward recession and its stock market hovers around a 5-year-low, shoppers are closing their wallets, and the impact on European fashion houses has been dramatic.
From Louis Vuitton to Versace, brands are testing new strategies for the world’s second-largest luxury goods market after the United States, such as wooing the super-wealthy or using Tokyo as a shopping mall for the rest of Asia.
But so far, no company appears to have found the magic formula to cure Japan’s luxury malaise.
“Some of my friends really like to buy designer brands, but in general, brands are less important now,” said Hiromi Takahashi, a 38-year-old office worker wearing a black top embellished with studs and sequins.
Takahashi was browsing through Jean-Paul Gaultier jackets and Alexander McQueen tops at Via Bus Stop, a boutique in Tokyo’s sleek Midtown shopping mall. She did not plan to buy any of the clothes, preferring cheaper labels.
Around her, young couples and groups of women were toting small gift bags with accessories by mid-range brands — affordable treats in the midst of a shrinking economy.
Japan’s gross domestic product contracted 0.7 percent in the April-June quarter, more than expected.
At the same time, prices are rising while wages are not. Core inflation was stuck at a decade-high 2.4 percent in August due to high fuel and raw material costs, but cash earnings actually slipped 0.3 year-on-year that month and household spending was down 4 percent.
No wonder consumer confidence hit a record low in September.”It’s not just luxury goods but also other clothes and eating out and cars and oil products, mainly because of the price rises,” said Azusa Kato, chief economist at BNP Paribas.
She attributed the luxury goods slide especially to the decline in Tokyo’s stock market, which hurt the middle class. The Nikkei share average has lost about 45 percent so far this year.
The downturn has also erased another much-cited Japanese phenomenon, the so-called “parasite singles,” young professionals living with their parents who would spend all their money on Louis Vuitton wallets and Chanel bags.
After the decade-long 1990s recession and the bursting of the technology bubble in 2002, Japanese companies fired employees and hired temporary workers, drying out the young spenders.”Now, many young people are on short-term contracts. Their income is low, so they have to live with their parents and their spending is very low,” Kato said.
Luxury firms used to love Japan for its broad consumer base with a traditional fondness for quality, craftsmanship and the ability to blend in by wearing certain brands.
At France’s Hermes, Executive Vice President Patrick Albaladejo said in September that his business had suffered with Japan’s soft economy because many of his customers were middle-class consumers. His solution: focus on Japan’s next-door neighbor, China, and on the super-rich.”We expect to see very, very solid growth in our existing stores in China,” he said at the time.
As Japan’s middle crumbles, many other luxury executives turn their attention toward the very top, and toward the island’s neighbors.
But they too are not immune to the global economic gloom. In Hong Kong, retail sales in August grew 3.9 percent by volume from a year earlier, the weakest growth in 16 months, though stellar compared to Japan’s 0.7 percent rise for that month.
Over the past couple of years, brands such as Armani, Bulgari and Gucci have opened huge, glamorous Tokyo flagship stores complete with restaurants and even a spa, hoping to attract wealthy fashionistas from all over Asia.
They are also aggressively targeting the one domestic class that is still spending: the new rich who have emerged in sectors such as information technology and like to show off their wealth.
Elite buyers can be seen at the Louis Vuitton boutique in the Roppongi Hills complex, which houses the Japanese headquarters of Goldman Sachs and the apartments of several billionaires.
LOUIS VUITTON’S SECRET BAG
Inside the spacious boutique, smiling women greet visitors with a bow, while a handful of customers look at bags, shoes and ruffled dresses costing upwards of 500,000 yen (,000). When this boutique first opened, long queues would form outside.
“Over the past year, fewer and fewer people have been coming to this shop,” said shop assistant Takashi Hara. “The economy is decreasing. But we do see more and richer Chinese tourists; they know rich Japanese people live here so they come here.”
If there is one brand that has symbolized Japan’s passion for labels, it is Louis Vuitton. Japan makes up 10 percent of the total revenue of LVMH, the world’s biggest luxury group.
Louis Vuitton’s strategy for Japan reflects the sector’s broader effort to court the super-high segment.
Hara and his colleagues send birthday cakes to regular clients and even show them a “secret” bag made of crocodile skin that is not advertised nor displayed in shops.
But a hard look at the numbers seems to show that Japan’s new billionaires, and even the rich Chinese, cannot offset the loss of thousands of Japanese secretaries who used to pay off the latest handbag in credit card installments.
LVMH saw yen-denominated sales in Japan fall 7 percent year-on-year in the nine months to September 30. In contrast, they rose 22 percent in the rest of Asia and 9 percent in Europe.
Hermes and Italian jeweler Bulgari reported a modest rise in Japanese sales of 1.5 percent and 3.8 percent, respectively, for the six months to June 30. European sales rose 27.8 percent at Hermes and 7.5 percent at Bulgari over that period.
The young and female shoppers are now rarely seen in Roppongi Hills, where they cannot afford any of the goods on show.
Instead, they go to Ginza. They walk along the beautifully decorated windows of Gucci, Chanel, Bulgari, and Hermes, marvel at the rippling silk dresses, hand-stitched bags and sparkling necklaces, and then head to the newly opened Hennes & Mauritz branch for a little feel-good shopping.