North Korean department store boasts ‘world-class’ design

Pyongyang department store design takes cues from foreign states.

A new North Korean department store just opened in Pyongyang is drawing attention for welcoming foreign technologies and products, as well as management strategies and culture.

The Choson Sinbo, the pro-Pyongyang media outlet headquartered in Tokyo, introduced the new Daesung Department Store that opened in Pyongyang in April, describing it as a “modern mall” created in close cooperation with foreign states.

It reported that architects at the Paektusan Academy of Architecture, known as North Korea’s top architectural research facility, strived to bring in world-class design from advanced nations, ranging from overall interior design to methods of showcasing products.

It is the department store’s strategy to sell both expensive world-class brands and North Korean-made quality products that are more affordable.

“Unlike Pyongyang Department Store No.1 or the Gwangbok District Commercial Center where quality North Korean goods are sold, Daesung Department Store not only sells North Korean goods, but also various world-class brands,” said the Choson Sinbo.

“They sell both affordable and expensive goods together.”

Daesung Department Store is reflecting global trends to sell both high and low-end brands from overseas as well as popular domestic brands within the confines of a single store.

Flat-screen televisions made by Sony and Philips, water purifiers from Maybaum, washing machines by Siemens, rice cookers by Tiger, and electronic goods by Panasonic were among the goods offered at the store.

North Korea also invited foreign experts to study the methods of showcasing products at the store, bringing in various tools to increase sales.

Daesung Department Store was first built in 1986 on Pyongyang’s Munsu Street, and was renovated recently for expansion.

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