Vietnam Continues to Be Favored Destination for Int’l Retail Brands

10:00:15 AM | 23/3/2021

First launched at Vincom Dong Khoi in Ho Chi Minh City in 2016, Zara has now gained success, paving the way for many other international fashion, food and entertainment brands to enter the Vietnam market, such as H&M, Decathlon, Uniqlo, and Haidilao Hot Pot.

"All-in-one" shopping

After the success of Zara, in 2017, the Vietnamese retail market became exciting when H&M opened its first store in Ho Chi Minh City. H&M's move proved the potential of the Vietnamese market, creating a massive launch of a series of international brands in the coming years. In 2019, Decathlon - a French sports brand, opened its first store in Hanoi and Watsons - an Asian cosmetic retail chain, started its first store in Ho Chi Minh City.

Most impressive is the expansion wave of major brands in 2020. This "upstream" move proved the attractiveness and prospect of the Vietnamese retail market even during the pandemic. Uniqlo is the most prominent brand, confidently making a big hit with five more stores in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City within seven months during the pandemic. MUJI - a Japanese brand, also set its first footprint in Vietnam with a store in Ho Chi Minh City. Fila sports fashion brand opened two consecutive stores in Hanoi at Vincom Center Pham Ngoc Thach and Vincom Mega Mall Ocean Park. In the culinary segment that was most affected by the pandemic, Chinese hot pot brand Haidilao Hot Pot also entered the Hanoi market, opening three consecutive stores in the year, all located in major shopping centers.

Thus, in less than five years, Vietnamese consumers have found the most favorite international brands of fast fashion, accessories and cosmetics right at home. The influx of foreign fashion brands in big cities has contributed to creating the habit of shopping directly at shopping centers to meet all service needs of customers.

What are the commonalities among international brands in Vietnam?

As can be seen, most international brands choose the premises of the shopping centers as the foundation for development in Vietnam, because they can quickly reach out to a large number of shoppers thanks to the prime location and other add-on services. Savills Vietnam also predicts that the commercial center will be a new future for retail, especially after the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, because it provides a stable number of customers and ensures the safety, health, and peace of mind for shoppers.

The shopping center space more clearly shows the advantages in the provincial market. Many brands that approach emerging markets such as Hai Phong, Quang Ninh, Da Nang, Nha Trang, Can Tho and Binh Duong also choose to place stores in shopping centers. In January 2021, H&M simultaneously opened two stores at Vincom Hung Vuong, Can Tho and Vincom Ha Long, Quang Ninh. The presence of H&M has attracted fashion followers locally and in the vicinity. In previous years, many international brands soon appeared in the provincial market such as: Mango and H: Connect. Other sports brands that were familiar with Vietnamese customers such as Adidas, Nike and Levi's also found a foothold with chain stores in shopping centers in Ca Mau, Binh Duong and Nha Trang.

On the path of expansion and development of international brands in Vietnam, the companion of Vietnam's largest shopping mall system is also recognized as a "gold credit". Thanks to its prime locations and reputation across the country, Vincom is always the first choice for international partners. With nearly 1.7 million square meters of retail space and 80 shopping centers across 43 cities and provinces, Vincom Retail is currently the largest owner, developer and operator of shopping centers in Vietnam. It is expected that in 2021, Vincom Retail will continue to open major shopping centers such as Vincom Mega Mall Smart City that bring the experience of LED waterfall displays of unique indoor lighting and Vincom Plaza in My Tho and Bac Lieu that meet the rising demand of domestic and international retail brands.

As one of the 16 most attractive emerging economies in the world, among the highest economic growth groups in the world in 2020, Vietnam will continue to be an attractive destination for international retail brands and services. With good quality and continuously expanding retail infrastructure, domestic consumers will benefit from a diversified source of high-quality goods and catch up with world trends.

Source: Vietnam Business Forum