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SECOND L.L. BEAN JAPAN STORE ATTRACTS LARGE CROWDS AND HIGH SALES

 FREEPORT, Maine, July 6 /PRNewswire/ -- L.L. Bean, the nation's largest cataloger in the outdoor specialty field, reports that the opening weekend of the new L.L. Bean Japan store in Shinjuku, Tokyo attracted an estimated 10,000 customers in its first weekend, resulting in sales 50 percent over the company's projections. The store, which opened on Friday, July 2, is the second to be developed under an agreement between L.L. Bean and L.L. Bean Japan, a joint venture of The Seiyu, Ltd. and Matsushita Electric Industrial Company, Ltd.
 The first L.L. Bean Japan store, located in Jiyugaoka, Tokyo (5-26 Okuzawa in Setagaya-Ku), opened in November, 1992. The new store is more than twice as large as the first L.L. Bean Japan store, offering 11,000 square feet of retail space.
 "The customers this weekend seemed very interested in sporting goods and footwear, more so than in the opening days of our first Japan store, although the entire product line is moving above our expectations," said Dick Leslie, L.L. Bean's director of international marketing for Japan. "The traffic here in the first weekend was like the traffic in our Freeport store on a summer weekend."
 The site of the new Shinjuku store has many advantages for an outdoor specialty retailer. It is in a major commercial and transportation area in Tokyo, with more than two million people traveling through the nearby Shinjuku train station daily. This upscale shopping, entertainment and convenient transportation center attracts people from all over Japan. For many, the Shinjuku train station is the starting point for a trip to two of Japan's national parks -- Chichibu- Tama and Tanzawa Ohyama.
 The L.L. Bean store is located in Health Plaza Shinjuku, a twin towers complex that houses popular stores and companies promoting health and sports. This facility is part of a Tokyo Municipal Government redevelopment project.
 The Shinjuku store has been designed as a "total outdoor lifestyle shop" offering Japanese customers a large variety of L.L. Bean products, including men's and women's outdoor apparel and casual wear, footwear, luggage and an extensive selection of such outdoor sporting goods as fly fishing equipment, mountain bikes and camping gear.
 Approximately 100,000 customers have visited the L.L. Bean Jiyugaoka store since its opening eight months ago. Sales during this period would indicate that the Japanese preference in outdoor apparel and equipment parallels that of American consumers. The most popular products in Japan, such as the original Maine Hunting Shoes and the Boat and Tote Bags, are also some of the most popular products in the United States. Customers of all ages are buying the wide variety of products in the store.
 In addition to the L.L. Bean Japan stores, L.L. Bean has a strong and growing catalog business in Japan. Customers can purchase high quality outdoor products either through the L.L. Bean catalog or at the L.L. Bean Japan stores.
 The agreement creating L.L. Bean Japan was signed in Tokyo on March 4, 1992. The Seiyu, Ltd., a supermarket and department store retailing group, is a member of the Saison group and is headquartered in Tokyo. Its sales for fiscal 1992 were $10 billion. Matsushita Electric Industrial Company, Ltd. is the world's largest manufacturer of consumer electronic products. Its brand names include Panasonic, National, Quasar and Technics. Its headquarters is in Osaka. Matsushita's sales for fiscal 1992 were $45 billion.
 Leon Leonwood Bean founded L.L. Bean in 1912 with his first product, the Maine Hunting Shoe. L.L. Bean has become a leader in the catalog industry, known for selling high quality outdoor apparel, footwear and equipment. The family owned company is recognized as a leader in customer service, based on enduring values of treating customers with respect and concern. L.L. Bean's 1992 fiscal year sales were $743 million.
 -0- 7/6/93
 /CONTACT: Catharine Hartnett of L.L. Bean, 207-865-4761, or Michael Sullivan of Ruder Finn, 212-715-1513, for L.L. Bean/


CO: L.L. Bean ST: Maine IN: REA SU:

SM-MP -- NY043 -- 8692 07/06/93 14:22 EDT
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Date:Jul 6, 1993
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