Hong Kong-headquartered healthcare and beauty retailer Watsons is to launch in Vietnam.
The first Watsons Vietnam store will open on January 17, on the ground floor of the high-profile Bitexco tower in downtown Ho Chi Minh City.
The store will take up half the space in the shopping precinct recently vacated by Topshop.
Teasing the launch, a huge backdrop with the slogan “Look good, Feel great” has been built outside the space, attracting many Vietnamese youngsters to take selfies and check in on social media.
On its LinkedIn page, Watsons Vietnam has been recruiting staff for the store and featuring the same artwork as on the Bitexco backdrop.
Watsons Vietnam will compete with rival Hong Kong healthcare and beauty chain Guardian, owned by Dairy Farm International, which launched in Ho Chi Minh City in 2011 and now claims to have more than 60 stores in four cities.
Watsons is operated by AS Watson, a subsidiary of retail and telecommunications giant CK Hutchison which is quarter-owned by Singapore sovereign investment fund Temasek Holdings. AS Watson has some 6800 Watsons health and beauty stores in 12 markets in Asia and Europe, including Hong Kong, Mainland China, Taiwan, Macau, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia. The broader AS Watson group has 14,500 stores, including electrical retailers and grocery stores.
Watsons has just celebrated the opening of its 500th store in Bangkok, Thailand. The store photo accompanying this story is of Watson’s new-generation store at IconSiam in Bangkok.