SoftBank transforms former Vodafone Roppongi flagship store

Speed is one factor for SoftBank’s success

Following the acquisition of Vodafone-Japan, SoftBank quickly turns round the company

Today, August 26, 2006, SoftBank (read our report on SoftBank here) opened the remodeled and rebranded Roppongi flagship store. The SoftBank Roppongi store is designed in light colors using a color scheme including mainly white, silver and grey, replacing Vodafone’s red. While Vodafone focussed on cost-cutting in Japan, SoftBank is now investing heavily, creating new stores and hiring store managers and assistants to revive and expand the chain of SoftBank stores.

“Flagship” stores are a concept which Vodafone introduced into Japan’s mobile industry – before Vodafone’s entrance to Japan, DoCoMo, J-Phone and KDDI/AU did not have specific flagship stores. Vodafone opened a flagship store in Shibuya, and shortly afterwards KDDI opened the KDDI Designing Studio in response. Because Vodafone’s initial Shibuya flagship store is in the middle of Shibuya’s entertainment district, the Roppongi-store, which was newly acquired by Vodafone, took a flagship role.

Vodafone recently decided to terminate business in Japan, and sold all Japan operations to SoftBank – Vodafone’s investment in Japan was the largest investment ever by any European company in Japan, about 7 times larger than Renault’s initial investment in Nissan…

This picture shows the flagship store in the new SoftBank dress, which opened on August 26, 2006

SoftBank's Roppongi store
SoftBank’s Roppongi store

This picture shows the flagship Roppongi store before (left hand picture) and after (right hand picture) the brand change from Vodafone to SoftBank. The SoftBank branded store opened on August 26, 2006:

Vodafone's former Roppongi flagship store rebranded as SoftBank store
Vodafone’s former Roppongi flagship store rebranded as SoftBank store after SoftBank acquired Vodafone-Japan

An elegant color scheme based on silver/white/grey replaces Vodafone’s red:

Vodafone's x-Roppongi flagship store rebranded as SoftBank store after SoftBank acquired Vodafone Japan
Vodafone’s x-Roppongi flagship store rebranded as SoftBank store after SoftBank acquired Vodafone Japan

SoftBank’s white/grey/silver color scheme replaces Vodafone’s previous bright red dress – the “YAHOO-Cafe” (there is no coffee…) represents SoftBank’s strong cooperation with YAHOO-Japan – SoftBank is largest shareholder of YAHOO-Japan:

SoftBank Roppongi store
SoftBank Roppongi store
SoftBank Roppongi store
SoftBank Roppongi store

SoftBank’s 705SH mobile phone by SHARP includes a YAHOO-Button for direct access to YAHOO-Japan mobile content and services.

Yahoo! button on SoftBank phones
Yahoo! button on SoftBank phones

SoftBank’s flagship store includes a YAHOO spot – at the moment the YAHOO-spot is an empty place holder. The YAHOO-Spot is labelled YAHOO-Cafe – but there is no coffee…

Yahoo! Cafe inside the SoftBank store
Yahoo! Cafe inside the SoftBank store

SoftBank’s phones are presented on surfboards:

SoftBank mobile phone display
SoftBank mobile phone display

Understand Softbank: our report: “SoftBank today and 300 year vision”

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