• Staff report

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Fast Retailing Co. said Wednesday it will open a large-scale Uniqlo store in downtown Osaka in October, with several more to follow in major cities within a year.

The new store, Uniqlo Plus, will have floor space three times that of an average Uniqlo outlet. The company said it will showcase the “evolution” of the casual clothing chain.

The plan was announced as part of the company’s business strategy for its fiscal year, which began Wednesday.

The chain, which gained nationwide recognition several years ago with cheap fleece jackets, said it will put more emphasis on quality by offering slightly more expensive lines featuring quality fabrics and fashionable designs.

The company’s chief operating officer, Gennichi Tamatsuka, told a news conference that the move is designed to eliminate the chain’s cheap image, although Uniqlo will not abandon its low prices.

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