Sojitz GMC Acquires Trademark Rights to Admiral Brand for Five Regions in East Asia

Planning and Development Capabilities Established in Japanese Market to be Used for Business Expansion

TOKYO--Sojitz General Merchandise Corporation (Sojitz GMC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sojitz Corporation (TOKYO:2768), acquired trademark rights to England’s Admiral casual fashion brand for five regions in East Asia (China, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, and South Korea). With the acquisition of these trademark rights, Sojitz GMC will solidify the production foundations of its existing business while using the brand know-how that it established in the Japanese market to sell Admiral as an English brand launched from Japan in East Asian markets.

Sojitz GMC began selling Admiral casual footwear in Japan in 2006 performing the full role from planning, design, production, to sales. Annual sales volumes which were approximately 40,000 pairs in 2007 has grown to a level of approximately 200,000 pairs with the support from the generation around 20 years old or younger. Sojitz GMC designed products using materials such as Harris Tweed and Liberty brand textiles from England, and took various measures such as product planning in collaboration with Japan's largest mail-order fashion sites and premier select shops, developing Admiral into a brand known for retaining unique English characteristics.

Sojitz GMC will begin overseas marketing of Admiral branded products in 2014 and will look into sales of products other than casual footwear.
About Sojitz GMC:

In addition to Admiral, Sojitz GMC handles a wide range of consumer goods brands including Eastpak backpacks, Reef surf goods, and Dot-Drops suitcases. Sojitz GMC imports and sells products, but also conducts brand marketing through original product planning and promotions that make maximum use of the brand histories and concepts.

Sojitz GMC will continue to propose ever-better consumer products as the consumer’s best partner and to expand its scope of business.
About Admiral:

Admiral was established in 1914 and has become an international brand sold in 40 countries around the world including Japan. It is one of the most widely-recognized European brands in Japan. The Admiral name derives from the manufacture of uniforms for the British Navy. The brand logo is based on the chevron of admiral. In the 1970s and 1980s, Admiral integrated sports and fashion, sold textiles with innovative designs and quality, and contracted with a number of major professional soccer clubs including Manchester United (1975-1980). Admiral also sponsored the historic England national soccer team for 10 years.

A special website (http://admiralfootwear.com/100th/) has been created to mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Admiral brand. This website will actively promote the brand by posting Admiral's history, product information, information about England, interviews with celebrities, and more.

Sojitz General Merchandise Corporation / Haruo Hayashiya, +81-3-6894-5760

By press release 

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