• Kyodo

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Hanshin Department Store President Teruyuki Saegusa estimated Tuesday that the economic impact of the Hanshin Tigers winning their first Central League pennant in 18 years will come to about 400 billion yen nationwide.

“Consumption, which has been sluggish, will most definitely make an upswing. That effect will likely reach about 400 billion yen nationwide,” Saegusa told a news conference at Hanshin’s main store in the Umeda district.

He said the figure is based on an estimate that there are about 20 million Tiger fans in the country and that they will spend about 20,000 yen each on merchandise related to the team as well as on drinking and eating.

Saegusa said he revised upward his earlier estimate — made before the Tigers won the pennant — that fans would spend 10,000 yen each after seeing more customers than expected flock to a special victory sale at the department store that started Tuesday.

But Saegusa predicted that sales at the store will not exceed the 4 billion yen it rang up when the Tigers last won the Central League pennant, as restrictions are in place on the number of customers able to enter the store at any one time, plus the fact that their interest is concentrated on Tigers goods.

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