The minimalist design trend – think Steve Jobs’ iconic black T-shirt and jeans – that has caught on over the past decade, helped make Japanese lifestyle retailer MUJI familiar to Chinese consumers. MUJI on Monday opened its 200th store in China, in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou.
MUJI’s popularity has inspired some Chinese copycats, who try to cater to a new generation of consumers’ tastes. AllChinaTech handpicked five of the most popular MUJI copycats, based on market recognition, business scale, and functionality.
Founded in 2001, Emoi has opened about 40 stores in more than ten cities across China, and expanded to major overseas cities in the Asia Pacific Region, North America and Europe. It sells a variety of smart life and home living items, including lamps, diffusers, and speakers.
Officially launched in 2007, Vancl has raised more than USD 500 million financing. The clothes company and online retailer sells basic and simply-designed clothing to its consumers across the country. It’s worth mentioning that Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun is one of Vancl’s investors.
Founded in 1994 in eastern China’s Hangzhou, JNBY operates over 500 stores across China, Russia, Japan, and New York City. JNBY, or Jiangnan Buyi, literally means clothes from southern China in Chinese. Targeting urban and modern females, the clothing company designs, makes, and sells clothes with a down-to-earth aesthetic.
Launched in 2015, NetEase Yanxuan is an e-commerce branch of NetEase, China’s leading news portal and gaming giant. NetEase connects original producers of big brands – including MUJI, Uniqlo, and Coach – with consumers, providing a wide range of daily items, including homeware, luggage, and bags.
Officially launched in March, MIJIA is Xiaomi’s smart home lineup. Plans for Xiaomi’s smart home ecosystem began in 2013. They have made a number of smart devices, including smart rice cookers, wristbands and smart scales. Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun in July said that “the business model that we follow is to focus on retail, and become the MUJI of technology”.
(Top photo from Baidu Images)